UNESCO launches second phase of project to mitigate disaster risk in Siq - JORDAN TIMES

openingsiq.jpg

© UNESCO

AMMAN — UNESCO on Tuesday launched the second phase of the project “SIQ STABILITY — Mitigation of Immediate Hazards in the Siq of Petra” at the National Library Department, in cooperation with the Italian embassy. “The Siq project, experimental in nature, adopted a pioneering approach supported by national and international experts, and this resulted in scientific research and data, which provided a solid base... for mitigation interventions to be implemented this year and the next,” UNESCO Representative to Jordan Costanza Farina said at the ceremony. From 2012 to 2015, UNSECO Amman engaged with national authorities in the first phase of the Italian-funded project “SIQ STABILITY — Sustainable Monitoring Techniques for Assessing Instability of Slopes in the Siq of Petra”. “The key added value of the project is translating into practice the shared vision of Jordan, Italy and UNESCO for the protection of heritage sites from disaster risks... conflict or natural hazards,” Farina added. She commended His...

AMMAN — UNESCO on Tuesday launched the second phase of the project “SIQ STABILITY — Mitigation of Immediate Hazards in the Siq of Petra” at the National Library Department, in cooperation with the Italian embassy.

“The Siq project, experimental in nature, adopted a pioneering approach supported by national and international experts, and this resulted in scientific research and data, which provided a solid base... for mitigation interventions to be implemented this year and the next,” UNESCO Representative to Jordan Costanza Farina said at the ceremony.

From 2012 to 2015, UNSECO Amman engaged with national authorities in the first phase of the Italian-funded project “SIQ STABILITY — Sustainable Monitoring Techniques for Assessing Instability of Slopes in the Siq of Petra”.

“The key added value of the project is translating into practice the shared vision of Jordan, Italy and UNESCO for the protection of heritage sites from disaster risks... conflict or natural hazards,” Farina added.

She commended His Majesty King Abdullah’s efforts to preserve, sustain and promote Petra — one of the first sites inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List for Jordan — and other archaeological locations in Jordan.

She thanked the Department of Antiquities (DoA) and the Petra Archaeological Park (PAP) for supporting the project since its beginning.

A video was screened during the ceremony, showcasing the monitoring techniques installed in Petra and the results of the first phase of the Siq stability project.

Speaking at the ceremony, Labour Minister and acting tourism minister Nidal Katamine said that if there were no attempts to solve the problems of falling debris and rocks, not only would the site have been affected but tourist movement as well.

He said this is Italy’s 13th mission in protecting cultural sites in Jordan and referred to past civilisations which have left a mark in the Kingdom, such as the Romans and the Byzantines.

For his part, Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni said, “...the mission to keep it [the Siq] as it is, to observe, study and to avoid risk from all points of view is a mission [that is] very relevant for one of the most important archaeological sites of the world.”

“We are in fact two countries with ancient civilisations, with very good relations in the present days,” he added.

“This... cooperation is so good also because of the fact that we share a common past and a common interest in cultural heritage.”

PAP Deputy Chief Commissioner Emad Hijazeen told The Jordan Times that the most important step in the second phase is to sustain the project to ensure that it remains ongoing.

The photo exhibition “The Net of the Siq: a Journey through the SIQ STABILITY project” was inaugurated at the conclusion of the ceremony.

The photos showcase the activities undertaken by UNESCO in cooperation with DoA and PAP in the Siq of Petra, some 235km south of Amman, for the past six years.

Examples of the three-dimensional documentation of Petra through advanced laser scanning techniques are also displayed at the exhibition, which will continue until late next week.

JORDAN TIMES