Time to find “magic formula” for peaceful coexistence: UNESCO chief

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Irina Bokova at the opening ceremony of the 4th World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue, in Baku, Azerbijan: UNTV

It's time to fight extremism and find that "magic formula" that will help people live peacefully together, the head of the UN's cultural and scientific organization (UNESCO) urged on Saturday at the end of a three-day conference on intercultural dialogue.

In her closing remarks, Irina Bokova expressed hope and optimism that the world was "on the right path".

More than 100 delegates from 40 countries took part in this year's 4th World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Jocelyne Sambira reports.

The UN-backed intercultural dialogue in Baku, Azerbaijan, ended on a high note, with UNESCO's Director-General, Irina Bokova, calling on participants to act now to stamp out extremism and "build peace in the minds of men and women."

The past three days were a flurry of debates, panel discussions, exhibits and concerts held by renowned artists working to bring people of different walks of life closer together, what UNESCO calls "rapprochement of cultures". 

Preventing terrorism in cyberspace, educating girls to combat violent extremism, and changing people's negative perception of migrants in cities were some of the topics broached at the Forum  

Irina Bokova urged the participants to try to establish an intercultural dialogue in their respective countries.

"I think it's a moment of commitment, of engagement, I think we all feel a certain sense of urgency, that we have to act…the world out there is very fragile, and peace is very fragile. And how to sustain peace, how to build these inclusive resilient societies and how to prevent in certain cases this extremism and find this magic formula of living together I think this deserves all our efforts and all our commitments."

The UNESCO Director-General praised the Government of Azerbaijan for hosting the World Forum for the fourth time, touting the country as an example of a nation where people of different faiths and cultures live in peace.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations. 

Duration: 1'34"

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