UNU-UNESCO Conference on War, Revolution and Heritage

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  • 2014•06•12     Paris

    “Heritage is a testimony of men’s constancy among their wanderings”

    “Le patrimoine témoigne de la constance des hommes au milieu de leurs errances.”

    Daniel Rondeau, UNU Representative at UNESCO

    Daniel Rondeau, UNU Representative at UNESCO. Photo: Fabrice Gentile

    Daniel Rondeau, UNU Representative at UNESCO. Photo: Fabrice Gentile

    On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the adoption of the 1954 Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, and the eve of the 38th session of the World Heritage Committee in Doha (Qatar), UNESCO and UNU co-organized an international conference of discussions on the issue of heritage and conflict.

    In recent decades, conflicts around the world have often been based on identity and ethno-political clashes rather than inter-state warfare. Heritage, in its tangible and intangible forms, has often been a target of these conflicts, due to its highly symbolic nature, which may be both a powerful instrument of reconciliation and an element of division among communities. There is a pressing need to reflect on the diverse threats to heritage, as spiritual legacy and living witness of human creativity. We also should coordinate and multiply the ways to prevent the loss of heritage and promote its preservation, including increasing awareness and solidarity within the international community.

    The conference benefited from the contributions of prominent global heritage actors including the United Nations, civil society, the private sector, international governmental and non-governmental organizations, as well as practitioners and renowned academics. The participants discussed concrete cases where heritage has been threatened or even destroyed in the context of conflicts, as well as the multifaceted role heritage plays in achieving sustainable peace and development goals.

    An article about the conference appeared in the national newspaper Le Figaro on 10 June 2014.

    See the Related Files tab for the event’s full program and background information.