At the closing ceremony, Geneva Centre Chairman Dr Hanif Al Qassim noted that “investing in the education of young women is one of the most effective ways to reduce gender discrimination and work towards a just and equal society.” Obaid Al Zaabi, Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations, expressed his admiration for the way in which the Geneva Centre programme had been conducted, and for the responsiveness of the students involved.

The closing ceremony was attended by the permanent representatives of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Palestine, Libya, Morocco, the UAE, and Romania, as well as representatives from non-governmental organisations including Diplo Foundation and the Geneva Welcome Centre, and the University of Geneva.

Maria Coibanu, the Ambassador of Romania to the United Nations in Geneva, reflected that the programme represented an important step in promoting equal access to education across genders, and offered the assistance of herself and the Geneva network of ambassadors in delivering future programmes aimed at advancing the status of women.

Anastasia Outkina, a delegate from International Geneva and head of the NGO service, added that the Centre was “very impressive in its delivery of such high calibre programmes within just a few months of its establishment”.

Sleiman El Sheikh, the Ambassador of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation to the United Nations in Geneva, commended the Centre for its initiatives in promoting human rights through women’s empowerment, and expressed his hope that “the Middle East can continue to promote human rights while maintaining its cultural traditions”.

Abdullah Nasser Al Rahbi, the Ambassador of Oman to the United Nations in Geneva, congratulated the Centre on its work and reflected on the importance of “translating the textbook theory of human rights into meaningful practice, by meeting with United Nations practitioners as well as academics and experts”.

Faisal Bin Hassan Trad, the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United Nations in Geneva, also commented that his government “welcomes the contribution of the Centre to educating and empowering women, and looks forward to future cooperation in the field of human rights”.

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