Press releases

24 March 2015
Madrid
Spain
UNWTO saddened by tragic crash of Germanwings airline
UNWTO is deeply saddened by the crash of Germanwings Flight 4U 9525. On behalf of the international tourism community, UNWTO expresses its sympathies and condolences to the families and friends of the victims onboard.
18 March 2015
Madrid
Spain
UNWTO strongly condemns attack in Tunisia
UNWTO is deeply saddened and shocked by the attack in the Bardo Museum in Tunis, the capital of Tunisia. UNWTO conveys its heartfelt sympathy to the families of the victims who lost their lives or were injured, and expresses its solidarity to the people and the Government of Tunisia and to the governments of all nationals who were killed or injured. 
13 March 2015
Madrid
Spain
UNWTO Secretary-General and Greece’s new Tourism Minister discuss strengthened cooperation
UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, and the new Minister of Tourism of Greece, Elena Kountoura, met on the occasion of ITB to discuss how to strengthen the collaboration between UNWTO and Greece (Berlin, Germany, 3 March 2015).
8 March 2015
Madrid
Spain
International Women’s Day: Tourism sector can do more to step it up on gender equality
On the occasion of International Women’s Day, UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, calls upon the tourism sector to step up policies and business practices that promote gender equality and women's empowerment.
5 March 2015
Madrid
Spain
Visa facilitation, infrastructure and marketing: key priorities for Silk Road Ministers
Visa facilitation, infrastructure development and marketing were the priorities identified by the 5th UNWTO Silk Road Ministers’ Meeting at ITB to advance transnational routes (ITB Berlin, Germany 4 March 2015).
4 March 2015
Madrid
Spain
UNWTO strongly condemns the destruction of cultural heritage
UNWTO is appalled by the systematic destruction of cultural and religious artefacts in Syria and Iraq, the last of which in the Mosul Museum in Iraq. On behalf of the international tourism community, UNWTO joins UNESCO in urging immediate action to safeguard the world’s cultural heritage.
3 March 2015
Madrid
Spain
Tourism development in Africa challenged by wildlife crime
Wildlife watching tourism is one of the most important tourism segments in Africa, according to new UNWTO research released on the occasion of World Wildlife Day. In view of tourism’s potential in advancing inclusive growth across the continent, poaching and illicit trade in wildlife pose a serious threat to the future of Africa’s socio-economic development, the publication warns. 
3 March 2015
Berlin
Germany
The Travel and Technological Revolutions: UNWTO Secretary-General at ITB 2015
In his ITB 2015 opening address, UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai highlighted how new technologies are changing society and shaping the tourism sector, shifting power from governments and companies to citizens and consumers. Rifai recalled that with power comes responsibility and highlighted tourism´s capacity to overcome prejudice in an often divided world (ITB Berlin, Germany, 3 March 2015).
26 February 2015
Madrid
Spain
UNWTO report identifies common criteria for 4 and 5 star hotel classification
The new UNWTO report Hotel Classification Systems: Recurrence of Criteria in 4 and 5 Star Hotels, identifies the common criteria among 4 and 5 star hotels, providing valuable insights for destinations wishing to revise existing or establish new hotel classification systems.
25 February 2015
Madrid
Spain
UNWTO activities at ITB 2015
The 5th Silk Road Ministers’ Meeting, community empowerment through tourism and creative industries and the 30th meeting of World Tourism Network on Child Protection are UNWTO’s main activities during the ITB Travel Trade Show 2015 (Berlin, Germany, 4-8 March, 2015).