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II Appeal for the protection of cultural property in Palestine
Posta della Redazione

Naples, 19.09.2005

To the President of the Palestinian Authority, H.E. Mahmoud ABBAS

To the Palestinian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, H.E. Zeiad AL-BANDAK

To the Palestinian Ministry of the Foreign Affairs, H.E. Naser AL-QUDWA
To the President of Israel, H.E. Moshe KATZAV

To the Prime Minister of Israel, H.E. Ariel SHARON

To the Director General of UNESCO, Mr. Kochiro MATSUURA

To the Heads of Government Parties to The Hague Convention of 1954

Copy to: U.N. General Secretary, Mr. Kofi ANNAN





Appeal

The undersigned prof. dott. Fabio Maniscalco, as Director of the
International Observatory for the Protection of Cultural Heritages in Areas of Crisis, and on behalf of all those who wish to sign this appeal,

Considering that

- The Agenda for the 172nd session of the UNESCO
Executive Board includes the request for the admission of Palestine to UNESCO (ref. 167 EX/Dec.8.5, Doc. 172 EX/44);

-Following the various armed conflicts of the last
century, after a tough and sometimes contradictory process, the
International Community has recognized some legal instruments finalized to safeguard cultural heritage in conflict areas. We refer, in particular, to The Hague Convention of 1954 and its 1954 and 1999 additional Protocols;

- The Hague Convention of 1954 is until now the main
multilateral juridical tool, dedicated to the protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict;

- The principles of The Hague Convention of 1954
continue to be ignored;

- Since the end of the Second World War there have been
more than 100 international, mixed and internal conflicts, which have
produced the destruction of a great deal of cultural heritage. A dissolution
that, in part, results from the lack of a legislative Body, in the
international juridical system, able to codify rules that are valid and have
characteristics of generality and universality and from the absence, in the
Conventions in force, of clear prescriptions concerning individual penal
responsibilities and sanctions for the defaulting States;

- In the Preamble of The Hague Convention of 1954,
States parties recognize that damage to cultural property belonging to any
people whatsoever means damage to the cultural heritage of all mankind,
since each people makes its contribution to the culture of the world and
that the preservation of the cultural heritage is of great importance for
all peoples of the world and that it is important that this heritage should
be under international protection;

- In order that international law has a concrete effect
in the safeguard of cultural heritage in the event of armed conflict, it
would be necessary to ratify existing treaties by as many states as possible
(especially those involved in armed conflicts);

- During the long-lasting and endless crisis in the
Middle East, a huge amount of cultural and religious heritage has been
destroyed, damaged or stolen by conflicting factions;

- Palestine is not recognized as a State, therefore it
cannot ratify treaties;

- Although Israel has signed The Hague Convention in
1957, it is not bound to respect its provisions because the Palestinian
Authority has not ratified it.

Calls Upon the Palestinian Authority

- To raise the awareness of the local public opinion about the respect of
its and others historical and cultural identity and to adopt any useful
measure to protect the entire cultural heritage, movable and immovable,
material and immaterial, of Palestine;

- To promulgate national laws, concerning safeguard, preservation and
valorization of cultural heritage, more adequate to the renewed requirements
of Palestine;

- To present a petition to UNESCO to obtain the authorization to ratify
The Hague Convention of 1954 and its additional Protocols of 1954 and 1999.

Calls Upon the Government of Israel

- To raise the awareness of the local public opinion and the Israeli Army
for the respect of its and others historical and cultural identity and to
adopt any useful measure to observe the provision of The Hague Convention of
1954 both within its territory as well as within the Palestinian
territories;

- To support the possible request of the Palestinian Authority to UNESCO, to
ratify The Hague Convention of 1954.

Calls Upon Unesco and all State Parties to the Convention for the Protection
of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict (the Hague, 14 May 1954)

In case that the Palestinian Authority will present a petition to UNESCO in
order to ratify The Hague Convention of 1954, to agree to it and to favor
its implementation in the Palestinian Territories.



Fabio Maniscalco











****************************************************************************
**********************************

Scientific Address: Facolt di Studi Arabo-Islamici e del Mediterraneo
University LOrientale

Via Melisurgo n. 44, 80134 Naples (Italy) tel./fax (0039)0815511369 -
3387011247

Private Address: V.le Colli Aminei n. 461, Parco Coravide, lotto 15, 80131
Naples (Italy)

Web pages:
http://web.tiscalinet.it/osservatoriobc -

http://web.tiscali.it/mediterraneum_isform

E-mail: osservatoriobc@tin.it
isform@libero.it




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