ICOMOS Current Affairs - 2019
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April 18 was observed as the World Heritage Day 2019 with the theme Rural Landscapes. The theme Rural Landscapes is related to the theme of the 2019 International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) Scientific Symposium on Rural heritage to be held at Marrakesh, Morocco in October.
World Heritage Site
UNESCO defines a World Heritage Site as a “natural or man-made area or a structure that is of international importance, and space which requires special protection.”
Genesis of the World Heritage Day
On 18 April 1982 on the occasion of a symposium organised by ICOMOS in Tunisia, it was suggested to observe the “International Day for Monuments and Sites” simultaneously throughout the world.
UNESCO passed a resolution at its 22nd session on November 1983 approving the idea and recommended the member states to examine the possibility of declaring 18 April each year “International Monuments and Sites Day”. This has been referred to as the World Heritage Day.
World Heritage Day offers an opportunity to raise the public’s awareness about the diversity of cultural heritage and the efforts that are required to protect and conserve it, as well as draw attention to its vulnerability.
Tags: Cultural heritage • ICOMOS • International Day for Monuments and Sites • Marrakesh • Morocco
International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) launched Kerala Heritage Rescue Initiative to assess damage to rich cultural and built heritage sites in flood-devastated Kerala. ICOMOS is global monument conservation body.
Kerala Heritage Rescue Initiative
The initiative aims at setting up platform for emergency response to cultural heritage damaged by the floods in Kerala. It also has set Facebook page to collect information on the damage to buildings, museum collections, cultural artefacts, libraries, archives, and even intangible heritage.
Under this initiative, ICOMOS will assess damage and risks to rich tangible, intangible, movable and immovable heritage that has been adversely affected by floods, including monuments, historic buildings, museum collections and artefacts of important significance. It will also create heritage response team and train its members to undertake damage assessment and emergency measures.
ICOMOS has also approached International Centre for Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) to partner in post-disaster work. ICCROM based in Rome (Italy) is inter-governmental organisation dedicated to preservation of cultural heritage worldwide through training, information, research, cooperation and advocacy programmes.
Kerala is endowed with natural beauty and is home to number of iconic forts, palaces and other heritage buildings, which attract huge number of tourists every year. It is facing its worst floods in nearly century due to heavy rainfall that has left 223 dead and forced over 10 lakh people out of their homes. The Central Government has declared this calamity of ‘severe nature’.
Note: Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction calls for cultural heritage and its protection to help in building resilience and enhance ability of the affected population to participate in its own recovery.
International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS)
ICOMOS is global monument conservation body (non-government organisation) dedicated to promoting the application of theory, methodology and scientific techniques for conservation of architectural and archaeological heritage across the world. It is also advisory body to UNESCO for cultural heritage, in particular for implementation of World Heritage Convention. It was founded in 1965 in Warsaw (Poland) as a result of the Venice Charter of 1964. It is headquartered in Paris, France.