UNESCO Exec. Board OKs Memory of the World Reform

Society Culture

Paris, April 17 (Jiji Press)--UNESCO's Executive Board unanimously approved a plan to reform the application process for inscription on the Paris-based U.N. cultural body's Memory of the World Register by introducing an objection system.

The reform was requested by the Japanese government, which criticized the lack of transparency in the program's screening process following the 2015 registration of records related to the 1937 Nanjing massacre of Chinese civilians by Japanese troops and the 2016 application for registration of materials related to so-called comfort women, mainly Koreans, who were forced into prostitution for Japanese troops before and during World War II.

The board adopted Thursday the reform plan not to allow artifacts to be added to the Memory of the World Register if a country concerned files an objection and related nations do not come to an agreement to resolve the matter.

The reform plan requires new applications to be submitted via the governments of member states. Under the current system, civic organizations and local governments are also eligible to submit candidates for inclusion in the Memory of the World list.

The plan also transfers the authority to make the final registration decisions from the UNESCO director-general to the Executive Board.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press