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Interview with
                  h.E. Mr. Yuri STErK

                  Ambassador of Bulgaria to the United nations in Geneva

                                   His  Excellency  is  an  experienced  diplomat  Another  priority  of  ours  has  been  the
                                   with  more  than  34  years  in  the  diplomatic  advancement  and  empowerment  of  women
                                   career,  including  several  ambassadorial  and girls in all spheres of life – social, economic,
                                   assignments  and  an  appointment  as  deputy  political – and countering discrimination on
                                   minister for foreign affairs of his country. The  any grounds, including the fight against anti-
                                   year 2023 was a busy as well as a successful  Semitism,  intolerance,  racial  discrimination
                                   one, for Bulgaria was elected to the Human  and discrimination based on religion. All this
                                   Rights Council. We had a chance to meet the  will  be  part  of  our  commitment  within  the
                                   Ambassador just before the holiday season, to  Human Rights Council in 2024 and beyond.
                                   learn about his intentions and plans for this
                                   coming year.                           Another important area for us is the freedom of
                                                                          expression, where we will continue to support
                                   First of all, we would like to congratulate you  media  freedom  and  the  safety  of  journalists
                                   on your position on the rights of the child and  while  countering  disinformation,  which  has
                                   your seat on the Human Rights Council.  become a significant contemporary threat to
                                   Thank you. Regarding the rights of the child,  the  freedom  of  expression  and  freedom  of
                                   let me stress it’s not a new position, rather it is  opinion.
                                   a matter of continuity for my country, building
                                   on what we have done so far, on our consistent  In  a  nutshell,  these  are  my  country’s
                                   national position, which is also, as you know,  priorities  for  the  next  term  on  the  Human
                                   part  of  our  stance  within  the  European  Rights Council, from 2024 to 2026. We will
                                   Union. Already during our previous term on  be  focusing  on  education  as  a  vehicle  for
                                   the Human Rights Council, children’s rights  ensuring  that  all  children  around  the  world
                                   were an important vector of our engagement.  are able to enjoy their rights as provided by
                                   At  that  time  our  focus  was  on  the  rights  of  the  Universal  Declaration  of  Human  Rights
                                   children with disabilities.            and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

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