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    International Youth Conference “Model UN – New Silk Road” 2024 held at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University

    On June 8, 2024, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (KazNU) launched the international youth conference “Model UN – New Silk Road” 2024, dedicated to empowering youth in achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The conference, which underscores climate action, gender equality, and the attainment of all 17 SDGs, also commemorates the 90th anniversary of the university and the 10th anniversary of its designation as a Global Hub for the United Nations Academic Impact program.

    Yerkin Duyssenov, Chairperson of the Sustainable Development Committee and Vice-Rector for Operational Activities at KazNU, inaugurated the event. In his opening remarks, he emphasized the crucial role of youth as a vital component of human capital and the evolving demands on universities. He highlighted the need for universities to go beyond imparting academic knowledge and focus on preparing graduates to adapt to change and embrace continuous development. Today’s students, he noted, must be leaders capable of making unconventional decisions and addressing contemporary challenges.

    “As a Global Hub of the UN Academic Impact program on sustainability since 2012, KazNU has actively supported the international youth platform Model UN ‘New Silk Road’ and has been committed to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals through education, scientific research, and cooperation with international organizations,” stated Vice-Rector Duyssenov. He also noted the successful operation of two UNESCO chairs at the university, the Academic Regional Resource and Information Center of the UN at the Faculty of International Relations, and the reinstatement of the Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development.

    The conference aims to educate students in international diplomacy and develop their skills in addressing global issues through international law. Participants are tackling critical topics such as climate action, gender equality, and the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.

    Esteemed speakers at the conference included Ms. Michaela Friberg-Storey, UN Resident Coordinator in Kazakhstan; Dr. Amir Piric, Acting Director of the UNESCO Cluster Office; Dr. Vlastimil Samek, Head of the UN Department of Global Communications; Dr. Serik Naryssov, Chairman of the Asian Diplomatic Society; Mr. Fayzulla Nurullayev, Consul of the Republic of Uzbekistan in Almaty; Dr. Rustem Kurmanguzhin, Associate Professor at Narxoz University; and Dr. Rafis Abazov, Vice-Rector of KazNARU.

    Throughout the conference, participants engaged in three committees to discuss the significance of education in promoting human rights and reducing inequality, enhancing the resilience of Central Asian economies amidst climate change, preserving cultural heritage, and amplifying the role of women.

    The conference concluded with all active participants receiving certificates and commemorative prizes, underscoring the pivotal role of youth in solving global problems and strengthening international cooperation.