Burkina Faso is a landlocked country in West Africa. It covers an area of around 274,200 square kilometres and is surrounded by six countries: Mali to the north; the July 2018 population estimate by the United Nations was 19,751,651. Burkina Faso is a francophone country, with French as the official language of government and business. 40% of the population speaks the Mossi language. Called the Republic of Upper Volta, the country was renamed "Burkina Faso" on 4 August 1984 by then-President Thomas Sankara, its citizens are known as Burkinabé. Its capital is Ouagadougou; the Republic of Upper Volta was established on 11 December 1958 as a self-governing colony within the French Community, on 5 August 1960 it gained full independence, with Maurice Yaméogo as President. After protests by students and labour unions, Yaméogo was deposed in the 1966 coup d'état, led by Sangoulé Lamizana, who became President, his rule coincided with the Sahel drought and famine, facing problems from the country's traditionally powerful trade unions he was deposed in the 1980 coup d'état, led by Saye Zerbo.
Encountering resistance from trade unions again, Zerbo's government was overthrown in the 1982 coup d'état, led by Jean-Baptiste Ouédraogo. The leader of the leftist faction of Ouédraogo's government, Thomas Sankara, became Prime Minister but was imprisoned. Efforts to free him led to the popularly-supported 1983 coup d'état. Sankara renamed the country Burkina Faso and launched an ambitious socioeconomic programme which included a nationwide literacy campaign, land redistribution to peasants and road construction and the outlawing of female genital mutilation, forced marriages and polygamy. Sankara was overthrown and killed in the 1987 coup d'état led by Blaise Compaoré – deteriorating relations with former coloniser France and its ally the Ivory Coast were the reason given for the coup. In 1987, Blaise Compaoré became President and, after an alleged 1989 coup attempt, was elected in 1991 and 1998, elections which were boycotted by the opposition and received a low turnout, as well as in 2005.
He remained head of state until he was ousted from power by the popular youth upheaval of 31 October 2014, after which he was exiled to the Ivory Coast. Michel Kafando subsequently became the transitional President of the country. On 16 September 2015, a military coup d'état against the Kafando government was carried out by the Regiment of Presidential Security, the former presidential guard of Compaoré. On 24 September 2015, after pressure from the African Union, ECOWAS and the armed forces, the military junta agreed to step down, Michel Kafando was reinstated as Acting President. In the general election held on 29 November 2015, Roch Marc Christian Kaboré won in the first round with 53.5% of the vote and was sworn in as President on 29 December 2015. The 2018 CIA World Factbook provides this summary of the issues facing Burkina Faso. "The country experienced terrorist attacks in its capital in 2016, 2017 and 2018, continues to mobilize resources to counter terrorist threats". In 2018, several governments were warning their citizens not to travel into the northern part of the country and into several provinces in the East Region.
The CIA report states that "Burkina Faso's high population growth, recurring drought and perennial food insecurity, limited natural resources result in poor economic prospects for the majority of its citizens". The report is optimistic in some aspects concerning activities being done with assistance by the International Monetary Fund. "A new three-year IMF program, approved in 2018, will allow the government to reduce the budget deficit and preserve critical spending on social services and priority public investments". Called the Republic of Upper Volta, the country was renamed "Burkina Faso" on 4 August 1984 by then-President Thomas Sankara; the words "Burkina" and "Faso" both stem from different languages spoken in the country: "Burkina" comes from Mossi and means "upright", showing how the people are proud of their integrity, while "Faso" comes from the Dyula language and means "fatherland". The "bè" suffix added onto "Burkina" to form the demonym "Burkinabè" comes from the Fula language and means "men or women".
The CIA summarizes the etymology as "name translates as "Land of the Honest Men". The French colony of Upper Volta was named for its location on the upper courses of the Volta River; the northwestern part of present-day Burkina Faso was populated by hunter-gatherers from 14000 BC to 5000 BC. Their tools, including scrapers and arrowheads, were discovered in 1973 through archaeological excavations. Agricultural settlements were established between 3600 and 2600 BC; the Bura culture was an Iron-Age civilization centred in the southwest portion of modern-day Niger and in the southeast part of contemporary Burkina Faso. Iron industry, in smelting and forging for tools and weapons, had developed in Sub-Saharan Africa by 1200 BC. From the 3rd to the 13th centuries AD, the Iron Age Bura culture existed in the territory of present-day southeastern Burkina Faso and southwestern Niger. Various ethnic groups of present-day Burkina Faso, such as the Mossi and Dyula, arrived in successive waves between the 8th and 15th centuries.
From the 11th century, the Mossi people established several separate kingdoms. In the 1890s, during the European Scramble for Africa, the territory of Burkina Faso was invaded by France, colonial control was established following a wa
World Heritage Site
A World Heritage Site is a landmark or area, selected by the United Nations Educational and Cultural Organization as having cultural, scientific or other form of significance, is protected by international treaties. The sites are judged important to the collective interests of humanity. To be selected, a World Heritage Site must be an classified landmark, unique in some respect as a geographically and identifiable place having special cultural or physical significance, it may signify a remarkable accomplishment of humanity, serve as evidence of our intellectual history on the planet. The sites are intended for practical conservation for posterity, which otherwise would be subject to risk from human or animal trespassing, unmonitored/uncontrolled/unrestricted access, or threat from local administrative negligence. Sites are demarcated by UNESCO as protected zones; the list is maintained by the international World Heritage Program administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 "states parties" that are elected by their General Assembly.
The programme catalogues and conserves sites of outstanding cultural or natural importance to the common culture and heritage of humanity. Under certain conditions, listed sites can obtain funds from the World Heritage Fund; the program began with the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World's Cultural and Natural Heritage, adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO on 16 November 1972. Since 193 state parties have ratified the convention, making it one of the most recognized international agreements and the world's most popular cultural program; as of July 2018, a total of 1,092 World Heritage Sites exist across 167 countries. Italy, with 54 sites, has the most of any country, followed by China, France, Germany and Mexico. In 1954, the government of Egypt decided to build the new Aswan High Dam, whose resulting future reservoir would inundate a large stretch of the Nile valley containing cultural treasures of ancient Egypt and ancient Nubia. In 1959, the governments of Egypt and Sudan requested UNESCO to assist their countries to protect and rescue the endangered monuments and sites.
In 1960, the Director-General of UNESCO launched an appeal to the member states for an International Campaign to Save the Monuments of Nubia. This appeal resulted in the excavation and recording of hundreds of sites, the recovery of thousands of objects, as well as the salvage and relocation to higher ground of a number of important temples, the most famous of which are the temple complexes of Abu Simbel and Philae; the campaign, which ended in 1980, was considered a success. As tokens of its gratitude to countries which contributed to the campaign's success, Egypt donated four temples: the Temple of Dendur was moved to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Temple of Debod was moved to the Parque del Oeste in Madrid, the Temple of Taffeh was moved to the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden in the Netherlands, the Temple of Ellesyia to Museo Egizio in Turin; the project cost $80 million, about $40 million of, collected from 50 countries. The project's success led to other safeguarding campaigns: saving Venice and its lagoon in Italy, the ruins of Mohenjo-daro in Pakistan, the Borobodur Temple Compounds in Indonesia.
UNESCO initiated, with the International Council on Monuments and Sites, a draft convention to protect the common cultural heritage of humanity. The United States initiated the idea of cultural conservation with nature conservation; the White House conference in 1965 called for a "World Heritage Trust" to preserve "the world's superb natural and scenic areas and historic sites for the present and the future of the entire world citizenry". The International Union for Conservation of Nature developed similar proposals in 1968, they were presented in 1972 to the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm. Under the World Heritage Committee, signatory countries are required to produce and submit periodic data reporting providing the World Heritage Committee with an overview of each participating nation's implementation of the World Heritage Convention and a "snapshot" of current conditions at World Heritage properties. A single text was agreed on by all parties, the "Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage" was adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO on 16 November 1972.
The Convention came into force on 17 December 1975. As of May 2017, it has been ratified by 193 states parties, including 189 UN member states plus the Cook Islands, the Holy See and the State of Palestine. Only four UN member states have not ratified the Convention: Liechtenstein, Nauru and Tuvalu. A country must first list its significant natural sites. A country may not nominate sites. Next, it can place sites selected from that list into a Nomination File; the Nomination File is evaluated by the International Council on Monuments and Sites and the World Conservation Union. These bodies make their recommendations to the World Heritage Committee; the Committee meets once per year to determine whether or not to inscribe each nominated property on the World Heritage List and sometimes defers or refers the decision to request more information from the country which nominated the site. There are ten selection criteria – a site must meet at least one of them to be included on the list
French West Africa
French West Africa was a federation of eight French colonial territories in Africa: Mauritania, French Sudan, French Guinea, Ivory Coast, Upper Volta and Niger. The capital of the federation was Dakar; the federation existed from 1895 until 1960. Until after the Second World War none of the Africans living in the colonies of France were citizens of France. Rather, they were "French subjects", lacking rights before the law, property ownership rights, rights to travel, dissent, or vote; the exception was the Four Communes of Senegal: those areas had been towns of the tiny Senegal Colony in 1848 when, at the abolition of slavery by the French Second Republic, all residents of France were granted equal political rights. Anyone able to prove they were born in these towns was French, they could vote in parliamentary elections, dominated by white and Métis residents of Senegal. The Four Communes of Senegal were entitled to elect a deputy to represent them in the French parliament in 1848–1852, 1871–1876, 1879–1940.
In 1914, the first African, Blaise Diagne, was elected as the deputy for Senegal in the French Parliament. In 1916, Diagne pushed a law through the National Assembly granting full citizenship to all residents of the so-called Four Communes. In return, he promised to help recruit millions of Africans to fight in World War I. Thereafter, all black Africans of Dakar, Gorée, Saint-Louis, Rufisque could vote to send a representative to the French National Assembly; as the French pursued their part in the scramble for Africa in the 1880s and 1890s, they conquered large inland areas, at first ruled them as either a part of the Senegal colony or as independent entities. These conquered areas were governed by French Army officers, dubbed "military territories". In the late 1890s, the French government began to rein in the territorial expansion of its "officers on the ground", transferred all the territories west of Gabon to a single governor based in Senegal, reporting directly to the Minister of Overseas Affairs.
The first governor-general of Senegal was named in 1895, in 1904, the territories he oversaw were formally named French West Africa. Gabon would become the seat of its own federation French Equatorial Africa, to border its western neighbor on the modern boundary between Niger and Chad. After the Fall of France in June 1940 and the two battles of Dakar against the Free French Forces in July and September 1940, authorities in West Africa declared allegiance to the Vichy regime, as did the colony of French Gabon in AEF. Gabon fell to Free France after the Battle of Gabon in November 1940, but West Africa remained under Vichy control until the Allied landings in North Africa in November 1942. Following World War II, the French government began a process of extending limited political rights in its colonies. In 1945 the French Provisional Government allocated ten seats to French West Africa in the new Constituent Assembly called to write a new French Constitution. Of these five would be elected by five by African subjects.
The elections brought to prominence a new generation of French-educated Africans. On 21 October 1945 six Africans were elected, the Four Communes citizens chose Lamine Guèye, Senegal/Mauritania Léopold Sédar Senghor, Ivory Coast/Upper Volta Félix Houphouët-Boigny, Dahomey/Togo Sourou-Migan Apithy, Soudan-Niger Fily Dabo Sissoko, Guinea Yacine Diallo, they were all re-elected to the 2nd Constituent Assembly on 2 June 1946. In 1946, the Loi Lamine Guèye granted some limited citizenship rights to natives of the African colonies; the French Empire was renamed the French Union on 27 October 1946, when the new constitution of the French Fourth Republic was established. In late 1946 under this new constitution, each territory was for the first time able elect local representatives, albeit on a limited franchise, to newly established General Councils; these elected bodies had only limited consultative powers. The Loi Cadre of 23 June 1956 brought universal suffrage to elections held after that date in all French African colonies.
The first elections under universal suffrage in French West Africa were the municipal elections of late 1956. On 31 March 1957, under universal suffrage, territorial Assembly elections were held in each of the eight colonies; the leaders of the winning parties were appointed to the newly instituted positions of Vice-Presidents of the respective Governing Councils — French Colonial Governors remained as Presidents. The Constitution of the French Fifth Republic of 1958 again changed the structure of the colonies from the French Union to the French Community; each territory was to become a "Protectorate", with the consultative assembly named a National Assembly. The Governor appointed by the French was renamed the "High Commissioner", made head of state of each territory; the Assembly would name an African as Head of Government with advisory powers to the Head of State. The federation ceased to exist after the September 1958 referendum to approve this French Community. All the colonies except Guinea voted to remain in the new structure.
Guineans voted overwhelmingly for independence. In 1960, a further revision of the French constitution, compelled by the failure of the French Indochina War and the tensions in Algeria, allowed members of the French Community to unilaterally change their own constitutions. Senegal and former French Sudan became the Mali Federation, while
Ruins of Loropéni
The ruins of Loropéni are an ancient heritage site near the town of Loropéni in southern Burkina Faso. They were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2009; these ruins are the country's first World Heritage site. The site, which spans 11,130 square metres, includes an array of stone walls that comprised an ancient fortress, the best preserved of ten in the area, they date back at least a thousand years. The settlement was occupied by the Lohron or Kulango people and prospered from the trans-Saharan gold trade, reaching its height between the 14th and 17th centuries AD, it was abandoned in the early 19th century. Somé, Lassina Simporé. Lieux de mémoire, patrimoine et histoire en Afrique de l’Ouest: Aux origines des Ruines de Loropéni, Burkina Faso. Archives contemporaines, 2014. Royer, Bertrand. Le fil d’Ariane du patrimoine. Du musée ethnographique de Gaoua au site UNESCO de Loropéni. Géographie et cultures 79: 109-125. Royer, Bertrand. "Patrimoine Mondial de l'Unesco et mise en valeur des ruines de Loropéni."
Net et terrain: ethnographie de la n@ture en Afrique: 94-122. YouTube video by NHK Japan
Departments of Burkina Faso
The provinces of Burkina Faso are divided into 351 departments, whose urbanized areas are grouped into the same commune with the same name as the department. The 351 communes created in those departments have three kinds of status: 49 urban communes, are grouping their main city/town and all other administrative villages in their department. 302 rural communes are grouping all administrative villages in their department. Departments have the same name as their capital city or town, with a few exceptions. For the local elections in 2012, communes were created in each department that still did not have one; the departments are listed below, by province: Bagassi Department Bana Department Boromo Department Fara Department Oury Department Pâ Department Pompoï Department Poura Department Siby Department Yaho Department Balavé Department Kouka Department Sami Department Sanaba Department Solenzo Department Tansila Department Barani Department Bomborokui Department Djibasso Department Dokuy Department Doumbala Department Kombori Department Madouba Department Nouna Department Bourasso Department Sono Department Bondokuy Department Dédougou Department Douroula Department Kona Department Ouarkoye Department Safané Department Tchériba Department Gassam Department Gossina Department Kougny Department Toma Department Yaba Department Yé Department Di Department Gomboro Department Kassoum Department Kiembara Department Lanfièra Department Lankoué Department Toéni Department Tougan Department Banfora Department Bérégadougou Department Mangodara Department Moussodougou Department Niangoloko Department Ouo Department Sidéradougou Department Soubakaniédougou Department Tiéfora Department Dakoro Department Douna Department Kankalaba Department Loumana Department Niankorodougou Department Ouéléni Department Sindou Department Wolonkoto Department Komki-Ipala Department Komsliga Department Koubri Department Ouagadougou Department Pabré Department Saaba Department Tanghin-Dassouri Department Bagré Department Bané Department Béguédo Department Bittou Department Boussouma Department Garango Department Komtoèga Department Niaogho Department Tenkodogo Department Zabré Department Zoaga Department Zonsé Department Bissiga Department Comin-Yanga Department Dourtenga Department Lalgaye Department Ouargaye Department Sangha Department Soudougui Department Yargatenga Department Yondé Department Andemtenga Department Baskouré Department Dialgaye Department Gounghin Department Kando Department Koupéla Department Pouytenga Department Tensobtenga Department Yargo Department Bourzanga Department Guibaré Department Kongoussi Department Nasséré Department Rollo Department Rouko Department Sabcé Department Tikaré Department Zimtenga Department Boulsa Department Bouroum Department Dargo Department Tougouri Department Yalgo Department Zéguédéguin Department Nagbingou Department Barsalogho Department Boussouma Department Dablo Department Kaya Department Korsimoro Department Mané Department Namissiguima Department Pensa Department Pibaore Department Pissila Department Ziga Department Bingo Department Imasgo Department Kindi Department Kokologho Department Koudougou Department Nanoro Department Pella Department Poa Department Ramongo Department Sabou Department Siglé Department Sourgou Department Thyou Department Nandiala Department Soaw Department Dassa Department Didyr Department Godyr Department Kordié Department Kyon Department Pouni Department Réo Department Ténado Department Zawara Department Zamo Department Biéha Department Boura Department Léo Department Nébiélianayou Department Niabouri Department Silly Department Tô Department Bakata Department Bougnounou Department Cassou Department Dalo Department Gao Department Sapouy Department Doulougou Department Ipelcé Department Kayao Department Kombissiri Department Saponé Department Toécé Department Gaongo Department Guiaro Department Pô Department Tiébélé Department Zecco Department Ziou Department Béré Department Bindé Department Gogo Department Gomboussougou Department Guiba Department Manga Department Nobére Department Bilanga Department Bogandé Department Coalla Department Liptougou Department Manni Department Piéla Department Thion Department Diabo Department Diapangou Department Fada N'gourma Department Matiacoali Department Tibga Department Yamba Department Bartiébougou Department Foutouri Department Gayéri Department Ko
Market town or market right is a legal term, originating in the Middle Ages, for a European settlement that has the right to host markets, distinguishing it from a village and city. On the European continent, a town may be described as a "market town" or as having "market rights" if it no longer holds a market, provided the legal right to do so still exists. In Britain it remains in common use as a loose descriptive term for small rural towns with a hinterland of villages, it is sometimes reflected in their names, as with Market Rasen, or Market Drayton. Modern markets are in special halls, but this is a recent development; the markets were open-air, held in what is called the market square, centred on a market cross. They were and are open one or two days a week; the primary purpose of a market town is the provision of goods and services to the surrounding locality. Although market towns were known in antiquity, their number increased from the 12th century. Market towns across Europe flourished with an improved economy, a more urbanised society and the widespread introduction of a cash-based economy.
The Domesday Book of 1086 lists 50 markets in England. Some 2,000 new markets were established between 1200 and 1349; the burgeoning of market towns occurred across Europe around the same time. Market towns most grew up close to fortified places, such as castles or monasteries, not only to enjoy their protection, but because large manorial households and monasteries generated demand for goods and services. Historians term these early market towns "prescriptive market towns" in that they may not have enjoyed any official sanction such as a charter, but were accorded market town status through custom and practice if they had been in existence prior to 1199. From a early stage and administrators understood that a successful market town attracted people, generated revenue and would pay for the town's defenses. From around the 12th century and European kings began granting charters to villages allowing them to create a market on specific days. Framlingham in Suffolk is a notable example of a market situated near a fortified building.
Additionally, markets were located where transport was easiest, such as at a crossroads or close to a river. When local railway lines were first built, market towns were given priority to ease the transport of goods. For instance, in Calderdale, West Yorkshire, several market towns close together were designated to take advantage of the new trains; the designation of Halifax, Sowerby Bridge, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden is an example of this. A number of studies have pointed to the prevalence of the periodic market in medieval towns and rural areas due to the localised nature of the economy; the marketplace was the accepted location for trade, social interaction, transfer of information and gossip. A broad range of retailers congregated in market towns – peddlers, hucksters, stallholders and other types of trader; some were professional traders occupied a local shopfront such as a bakery or alehouse, while others were casual traders who set up a stall or carried their wares around in baskets on market days.
Market trade supplied for the needs of local consumers whether they were visitors or local residents. Braudel and Reynold have made a systematic study of European market towns between the 13th and 15th century, their investigation shows that in regional districts markets were held once or twice a week while daily markets were common in larger cities. Over time, permanent shops began opening daily and supplanted the periodic markets, while peddlers or itinerant sellers continued to fill in any gaps in distribution; the physical market was characterised by transactional exchange and bartering systems were commonplace. Shops had higher overhead costs, but were able to offer regular trading hours and a relationship with customers and may have offered added value services, such as credit terms to reliable customers; the economy was characterised by local trading in which goods were traded across short distances. Braudel reports. However, following the European age of discovery, goods were imported from afar – calico cloth from India, porcelain and tea from China, spices from India and South-East Asia and tobacco, sugar and coffee from the New World.
The importance of local markets began to decline from the mid-16th century. Permanent shops which provided more stable trading hours began to supplant the periodic market. In addition, the rise of a merchant class led to the import and exports of a broad range of goods, contributing to a reduced reliance on local produce. At the centre of this new global mercantile trade was Antwerp, which by the mid-16th century, was the undisputed largest market town in Europe. A good number of local histories of individual market towns can be found. However, more general histories of the rise of market-towns across Europe are much more difficult to locate. Clark points out that while a good deal is known about the economic value of markets in local economies, the cultural role of market-towns has received scant scholarly attention. In Denmark, the concept of the market town has existed since the Iron Age, it is not known, the first Danish market town, but Hedeby and Ribe were among the first. Per 1801, there were 74 market towns in Denmark.
The last town to gain market rights was Skjern in 195
The United Nations Educational and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations based in Paris. Its declared purpose is to contribute to peace and security by promoting international collaboration through educational and cultural reforms in order to increase universal respect for justice, the rule of law, human rights along with fundamental freedom proclaimed in the United Nations Charter, it is the successor of the League of Nations' International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation. UNESCO has 11 associate members. Most of its field offices are "cluster" offices covering three or more countries. UNESCO pursues its objectives through five major programs: education, natural sciences, social/human sciences and communication/information. Projects sponsored by UNESCO include literacy and teacher-training programs, international science programs, the promotion of independent media and freedom of the press and cultural history projects, the promotion of cultural diversity, translations of world literature, international cooperation agreements to secure the world's cultural and natural heritage and to preserve human rights, attempts to bridge the worldwide digital divide.
It is a member of the United Nations Development Group. UNESCO's aim is "to contribute to the building of peace, the eradication of poverty, sustainable development and intercultural dialogue through education, the sciences, culture and information". Other priorities of the organization include attaining quality Education For All and lifelong learning, addressing emerging social and ethical challenges, fostering cultural diversity, a culture of peace and building inclusive knowledge societies through information and communication; the broad goals and objectives of the international community—as set out in the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals —underpin all UNESCO strategies and activities. UNESCO and its mandate for international cooperation can be traced back to a League of Nations resolution on 21 September 1921, to elect a Commission to study feasibility; this new body, the International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation was indeed created in 1922.
On 18 December 1925, the International Bureau of Education began work as a non-governmental organization in the service of international educational development. However, the onset of World War II interrupted the work of these predecessor organizations. After the signing of the Atlantic Charter and the Declaration of the United Nations, the Conference of Allied Ministers of Education began meetings in London which continued from 16 November 1942 to 5 December 1945. On 30 October 1943, the necessity for an international organization was expressed in the Moscow Declaration, agreed upon by China, the United Kingdom, the United States and the USSR; this was followed by the Dumbarton Oaks Conference proposals of 9 October 1944. Upon the proposal of CAME and in accordance with the recommendations of the United Nations Conference on International Organization, held in San Francisco in April–June 1945, a United Nations Conference for the establishment of an educational and cultural organization was convened in London 1–16 November 1945 with 44 governments represented.
The idea of UNESCO was developed by Rab Butler, the Minister of Education for the United Kingdom, who had a great deal of influence in its development. At the ECO/CONF, the Constitution of UNESCO was introduced and signed by 37 countries, a Preparatory Commission was established; the Preparatory Commission operated between 16 November 1945, 4 November 1946—the date when UNESCO's Constitution came into force with the deposit of the twentieth ratification by a member state. The first General Conference took place from 19 November to 10 December 1946, elected Dr. Julian Huxley to Director-General; the Constitution was amended in November 1954 when the General Conference resolved that members of the Executive Board would be representatives of the governments of the States of which they are nationals and would not, as before, act in their personal capacity. This change in governance distinguished UNESCO from its predecessor, the ICIC, in how member states would work together in the organization's fields of competence.
As member states worked together over time to realize UNESCO's mandate and historical factors have shaped the organization's operations in particular during the Cold War, the decolonization process, the dissolution of the USSR. Among the major achievements of the organization is its work against racism, for example through influential statements on race starting with a declaration of anthropologists and other scientists in 1950 and concluding with the 1978 Declaration on Race and Racial Prejudice. In 1956, the Republic of South Africa withdrew from UNESCO saying that some of the organization's publications amounted to "interference" in the country's "racial problems." South Africa rejoined the organization in 1994 under the leadership of Nelson Mandela. UNESCO's early work in the field of education included the pilot project on fundamental education in the Marbial Valley, started in 1947; this project was followed by expert missions to other countries, for example, a mission to Afghanistan in 1949.
In 1948, UNESCO recommended that Member States should make free primary education compulsory and universal. In 1990, the World Conference on Education for All, in Jomtien, launched a global movement to provide basic education for a