Havana - Cuba is a nation with a wealth of culture, stated the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Audrey Azoulay, at the inauguration of the 41st International Festival of New Latin American Cinema on Thursday, running through December 15 in this capital.
Azoulay expressed her gratitude to the Director of the event, Ivan Giroud, and Minister of Culture of Cuba, Alpido Alonso, for allowing her to participate in the opening of the Festival, the most important in the continent.
The director of the UN agency described as extraordinary the performance by the Cuban National Ballet at the opening of the event and said that it constitutes a beautiful tribute to Prima Ballerina Assoluta, Alicia Alonso, who placed Cuban ballet on the international map and always shared her art with the new generations.
In the official's opinion, Alonso was also the brilliant representative of UNESCO's values as a Goodwill Ambassador.
In her speech, Azoulay referred to the importance of cinematographic materials to reflect on the complex socioeconomic reality, especially in the Latin American region.
More than ever we need 'Ojos que Ven' ('Eyes That See' - slogan of the current edition of the festival), she stressed, adding that the sharp eyes of filmmakers are required.
Azoulay also recognized Cuba's efforts to preserve its intangible heritage, with visible works in the oldest part of the Cuban capital, a reflection of its identity and living heritage.
Azoulay is the eighth UNESCO director-general to visit Cuba, and the sixth to do so after the revolutionary triumph of 1959, according to official data.
Cuba joined the organization on August 29, 1947, with which it has maintained uninterrupted ties ever since.
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