The Director-General of UNESCO calls for all Syrians to commit to the safeguarding of cultural Heritage in Bosra and Idlib

In the context of the recent escalation of hostilities in Bosra and Idlib, the UNESCO Director-General, Ms Irina Bokova, reiterates her call for the protection of Syria’s unique heritage.

“All Syrians must unite for the protection of their shared cultural heritage.” said the Director-General. “This heritage belongs to all Syrians and to all humanity. I call on all parties to refrain from using cultural heritage sites for military purposes and to protect them against any possibly damage and destruction resulting from fighting. At this time, I call on all parties to commit to the safeguarding of the World Heritage of Bosra, as well as the Idlib, Maarrat al Numaan and Bosra Museums”.

The Director-General expressed her satisfaction that, recently, the parties on the ground temporarily agreed to freeze combats at the World Heritage Site of Bosra.

 “Areas around cultural heritage sites and museums should remain protected and kept out of the conflict. The recent developments in Bosra are encouraging and commendable. We need to build on such initiatives to expand protected cultural areas”, she added, calling for a similar initiative in Idlib, for parties to refrain from military action that might endanger the city’s museums and sites.