Russia always had strong presence in cultural sector, but now Ukraine gradually replacing it – Karandieiev

Russia always had strong presence in cultural sector, but now Ukraine gradually replacing it – Karandieiev

Culture is one of the tools for promoting Russia’s imperial narratives and, thus, a strong presence in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) was extremely important to Russia. But, now, Ukraine is gradually replacing it.

The relevant statement was made by Ukrainian Culture and Information Policy Acting Minister Rostyslav Karandieiev in an interview with Ukrinform.

“Russia has always had a very strong presence in international organizations, in particular those working in the field of culture, related to it. For Russia, culture is one of the tools for promoting its imperial narratives across the world. That is why its presence in UNESCO was extremely strong. It is remaining so now, although we are gradually replacing Russia,” Karandieiev told.

In this regard, Karandieiev mentioned one of the latest decisions of the General Assembly of UNESCO on electing not Russia but Ukraine to the World Heritage Committee. In this way, Ukraine is replacing the aggressor state.

“And it’s not just us, but our colleagues, our partners who vote,” Karandieiev added.

Hence, they also realize that Ukraine deserves a higher rating in its aspirations for the preservation of cultural heritage, a higher rating for the results of this work. And, perhaps, not as decisively as Ukrainians would like, but Russia and its influence are leaving the cultural sector.

Additionally, Ukraine has been elected as Vice-Chair of the UNESCO Committee for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict.

“This is also a great achievement for us. We strengthen our influence, we find resources within ourselves. And our partners give us additional resources in order to focus on the preservation of monuments,” Karandieiev noted.

In his words, UNESCO’s protection does not mean that they put a Patriot system at each monument, create a dome or conduct any other physical protection measures. Later, UNESCO may contribute to financing restoration and renovation works, but its political significance is highly important, Karandieiev emphasized.

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