Tuesday, December 13, 2016

News: New International Fund for Protecting Heritage in Armed Conflict Areas

The creation of a US$100 million international fund to safeguard endangered cultural heritage in areas of armed conflict was one main outcome of this week’s Abu Dhabi Conference. Written By/ Nevine El-Aref.

On the initiative of French president François Hollande and Abu Dhabi crown prince sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed al-Nahyan, an International Conference for the Protection of Endangered Cultural Heritage in Armed Conflict Areas (ICPECHACA) was held late last week under the patronage of UNESCO in Abu Dhabi.

The two-day Conference brought together heads of state and ministers from over 40 countries affected by heritage loss due to armed conflicts, alongside key players involved in the field of heritage preservation, international public and private institutions, museums and private donors engaged in the field of cultural heritage, as well as experts working in the field.

After various speeches, commentaries and presentations, the Conference launched a Declaration on the Protection of Endangered Heritage that endorsed the creation of a new International Fund for the Protection of Heritage with an initial contribution by France of US$30 million and the objective to collect US$100 million in the future. It also recommended a follow-up conference in 2017 to help assess the implementation of the initiatives outlined in the Abu Dhabi Declaration.

According to a UNESCO press release, Hollande said that the “Fund will provide much-needed resources to protect heritage under attack and will be managed in close collaboration with UNESCO and respect UNESCO Cultural Conventions and international norms.”

“One year ago, we adopted the Paris Climate Agreement at the COP21 Conference for the preservation of our planet and for future generations. Today, we adopt this Abu Dhabi Declaration, with concrete measures and new tools to protect the legacy of our ancestors. This is a call to action, as there is no greater responsibility than that of building bridges between the past and the future of humanity,” Hollande said…. READ MORE.

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