The permanent representative of Lebanon to UNESCO, Khalil Karam, has handed over the presidency to the permanent representative of Libya, Abdelqader Malah, to become the new president of the Arab group for 2018.

Dr. Malah, praised the efforts of the former president of the Arab group and called on all Arab delegations to contribute effectively to the success of the joint Arab action within the organization, especially during the current challenging phase.

Malah was quoted by Libyan News Agency (LANA) as saying that "Libya has been one of the first contributors to UNESCO, since 1953, and despite all the circumstances, it has maintained its voice within the organization, expressing its cultural, educational and scientific presence".

LANA added that in addition to Libya`s recent award of the presidency of the Arab group, it also chairs the Committee on Natural Sciences of the Arab group for the this year, as well as the position of Vice-President of the Intergovernmental Bioethics Committee of the UNESCO.

The Arab group of UNESCO, which is now led by Libya, consists of Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, the Comoros, Mauritania, Palestine, Yemen, the UAE, Tunisia, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman and Morocco.