Four heritage sites in Cyprus, Italy granted "enhanced protection" by UNESCO

09:52, December 01, 2010      

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Three World Heritage sites in Cyprus and a fourth in Italy have been given "enhanced protection" status by the cultural property protection council of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) recently, the Paris- based UN organization said on Tuesday.

The Committee for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict endorsed this decision in its fifth meeting at UNESCO Headquarters from Nov. 22-24, the organization said in a statement.

These sites are Choirokoitia, Paphos (sites I and II) and the Painted Churches of the Troodos Region in Cyprus and Castel del Monte in Italy.

"Enhanced protection status reinforces the legal measures in place to prevent such terrible losses to the world's cultural heritage," said Nout van Woudenberg, the committee chairman.

Mostar Bridge in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the old city of Dubrovnik in Croatia were valuable cultural heritage sites destroyed in conflicts, according to the UNESCO.

"Enhanced protection" is one of the features of the 1999 Second Protocol to the Hague Convention of 1954 for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict. This protection outlaws using or targeting cultural sites in times of conflict by any means and identifies intentional attacks as criminal offenses.

Source: Xinhua


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