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Cablegate: Usunesco: Unesco Plans Small Experts

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS PARIS 004724

SIPDIS

FROM USMISSION UNESCO
FOR STATE IO/T JANE COWLEY, EB PAUL ACETO, OES/STAS
ANDREW W. REYNOLDS
STATE PASS USAID NORMAN RIFKIN
STATE PASS NSC GENE WHITNEY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: AORC TSPL EAID SENV IZ UNESCO KSCI
SUBJECT: USUNESCO: UNESCO PLANS SMALL EXPERTS
MEETING IN TRIESTE ON RECONSTRUCTING IRAQI SCIENCE

1. Summary and Introduction: The Director of
UNESCO's Science Analysis and Policies Division,
Mustafa El Tayeb, informed USUNESCO science officer
and intern (notetaker) that his office plans a
September 8 - 10, 2005 meeting in Trieste, Italy to
discuss efforts to rebuild Iraq's science
infrastructure. El Tayeb said that the planned
meeting will be co-hosted by UNESCO and the Trieste-
based International Centre for Theoretical Physics
(ICTP). It will include the Iraqi Vice Minister of
Higher Education and three other Iraqi delegation
members, as well as three UNESCO division directors,
including El Tayeb and Georges Haddad of the Higher
Education Division of the education sector. El Tayeb
indicated that he and ICTP Director K.R. Sreenivasan
would welcome USG involvement in the meeting. End
Summary and Introduction.


2. Trieste Meeting Goals. The purpose of the
planned Trieste meeting will be to follow up on
discussions first launched at the February 22-23
Iraqi Higher Education Seminar that took place at
UNESCO headquarters in Paris. In Trieste, attendees
will discuss and assess "needs-at-large,"
particularly for re-training of Iraqi scientists. El
Tayeb indicated that the Iraqi delegation has
requested advice from UNESCO's DG, who responded
that water resources are the most important priority
for Iraqi reconstruction. However, El- Tayeb noted
that capacity building in Iraq will also require
broad science training programs and technology
upgrading.

3. Funding. El Tayeb indicated that there are two
current sources of UN funding for efforts to rebuild
Iraq's infrastructure. First, there is a United
Nations Development Group (UNDG) fund, which is
supported by donors, coordinated through New York
and managed by a UNDG in Amman. The UNDG fund
includes $3.3 million earmarked for water resources,
plus another $20.1 million for education and
technology. Second, there is a $15 million pledge
from a Qatari Princess to benefit higher education
in post-war Iraq; within UNESCO, the education
sector is taking the lead on these funds. Of this
$15 million, $300,000 has been earmarked for a pilot
scientists training program that El Tayeb expects
will take place in Amman, Jordan because of its
proximity to Iraq and the presence there of
necessary facilities. El Tayeb indicated that
approximately $8 million has already been spent on
equipment for universities, and that the balance of
the $15 million is earmarked for additional
equipment, dormitories and for 500 fellowships to
train Iraqi scientists in other countries. El Tayeb
posited that it makes sense to provide training for
Iraqi scientists either in country or in neighboring
countries.
Oliver

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