Lyudmila Bokova, senator of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, called on parliamentarians from countries in the Asia-Pacific region to struggle against nationalist sentiment through developing intercultural cooperation and tourism. 

At the 26th Annual Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum in Hanoi, Lyudmila Bokova spoke that in present-day realities it was necessary for parliamentarians from around the world to pay equal attention to all aspects of international cooperation, including especially important ones, such as cultural exchange and international tourism.


“Coexistence of many ethnic cultures in a single space is the guarantee of reinforcing the security of the whole world”, said Lyudmila Bokova in her report ‘Strengthening of Regional Cooperation in Culture and Tourism’. 

According to the senator, Russia pays much attention to the creation of comfortable environment for peaceful coexistence of representatives of over 200 nationalities on its territory. Russia’s modern educational system provides teaching in 89 national languages of small and large ethnic groups. Parliamentarians supervise intercultural cooperation through Integration Club guided by Valentina Matvienko, Chairperson of the Federation Council.


The Strategy of the State Cultural Policy and the Strategy of the State National Policy aimed at strengthening of trust and mutual cultural exchanges of representatives of various ethnic groups, religions, and cultures have been developed and are now being implemented. 

Asia-Pacific countries have rich experience of cultural cooperation within the framework of the leading international structures, such as ASEAN, APEC, SCO, and EAEU. According to Lyudmila Bokova, tourism development is one the huge additional opportunities for cultural cooperation among the counties of the region. 

In recent years, the Asia-Pacific region recorded the fastest growth in the number of foreign tourists. That proves the enormous potential and inexhaustible mutual interest of the inhabitants of our countries in the history and culture of their neighbors. The senator proposed not to stop on what has been achieved. She believes that it is necessary to conduct Culture Years in the framework of the Asia-Pacific region, develop joint creative projects, and have cultural exchanges and art festivals. 

“Parliamentarians from all over the world should make every possible effort to protect the cultural identity of peoples from the unification and abuse from radical nationalists. We need to use the great potential of culture to oppose the dissociation and imposition of national intolerance that makes it convenient to hide other global goals of world terrorism”, said Lyudmila Bokova. 

The senator called on parliamentarians-members of APPF to take all national legislative measures when working in this direction. She proposed to support the initiative voiced at the 137th IPU Assembly. The initiative was to hold the World Conference on Interreligious and Interethnic Dialogue under the auspices of the United Nations and with participation of heads of states, representatives of world religions, and speakers of parliaments. 

Elena Khutornykh, news agency of the Eurasian Women’s Community

Translated by Nikolay Gavrilov