Strategic Content and Rationals
PERSGA’s origins can be traced back to the early 1970s when the Arab League Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization, ALESCO, initiated a program for the protection of the environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. ALESCO, with the assistance of UNESCO, convened a meeting in Bremerhaven, Germany in 1974, where initial ideas for an interdisciplinary research program were discussed. Subsequent meetings identified key regional concerns and proposed plans of activity, which gave rise to the Program for the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (PERSGA). An interim secretariat was established in Cairo to implement this program under the auspices of ALESCO. The Secretariat moved to Jeddah in 1980. PERSGA’s legal basis stems from the Regional Convention for the Conservation of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, known as the Jeddah Convention, signed in 1982. PERSGA, the Regional organization, was established in September 1995 under the umbrella of the Arab league. However, its creation was formally announced in the Cairo Declaration during the first Council meeting in Egypt, attended by all parties contributing to the Jeddah Convention.