University seminars for the Fight Against Illicit Trafficking of Cultural Property and promotion of its restitution in Central America
In the framework of the project to strengthen national capacities in the fight against illicit trafficking of cultural property and promotion of its restitution in Central America and Dominican Republic, the seminars will take place in February 2017, in at least one university of each beneficiary country of the project. The aim is to involve youth population in this issue.
The illicit trafficking of cultural property generates a lucrative unlawful trade, with a great percentage of stolen artefacts never being recovered and harmful consequences for the cultural heritage of the source countries. Central America is especially affected by this problem: the lack of legal and practical measures and regulations at regional and national levels as well as of appropriate training and expertise for the protection of cultural property poses a serious risk to the safeguarding of their identity for future generations and hinders the potential of culture as a primary vector for economic development.
The urgent need for Latin American and Caribbean countries to adopt a regional position towards the fight against the illicit trafficking of cultural property is explicitly mentioned in the Final Declaration of the Third Meeting of the Ministers of Culture of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, which took place in La Habana, Cuba on 18th and 19th of September 2015. The Declaration also encourages the creation of mechanisms to achieve an appropriate implementation of the UNESCO 1970 Convention and other international instruments – such as the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention, as well as to acknowledge the crucial role of Latin American and Caribbean countries in the preparation and adoption of the Operational Guidelines of the 1970 Convention.
In the framework of the project to strengthen national capacities in the fight against illicit trafficking in cultural property and promoting its Restitution in Central America and Dominican Republic, the seminars have been designed to strengthen and involve youth. The seminar will present to the students from the different faculties, the situation in Central America and the tools to protect the cultural property with materials designed for this activity.