Revive the Spirit of Mosul

Project name :

Revive the Spirit of Mosul

Budget :

more than 5M$

Project duration :

23-04-2018

Location :

Mosul, Iraq
Between 2014 and 2017, Mosul was the scene of one of the largest urban battles since the Second World War. It has left its inhabitants deeply scarred, with immense humanitarian needs. UNESCO will support the revival of the education and cultural institutions, and the rehabilitation of cultural heritage, to promote tolerance, civic engagement and economic activity.

Mosul is the living symbol of Iraqi’s pluralistic identity. For centuries, it has been a crossroad of culture in the Middle East. From the Sumerian cities to Babylon, from the walls of Nineveh to the Silk Road, the region has been a melting pot of people and ideas. Between 2014 and 2017, this story of peace – the true spirit of Mosul – has been overshadowed by another story of hatred and violence.

The occupation of Mosul left the City destroyed. Not a single structure is unscathed. Not a single pane of glass is unbroken. The archeological site of Nimrud, the Museum of Mosul, the Nabi Younnis Shrine, the Al Hadba Minaret and many other sites and landmarks lie in ruins.     #ReviveTheSpiritOfMosul

Thousands of homes are heaps of rubble. Many residents are slowly returning, the camps near the City are full. The entire education sector from pre-primary to higher education is devastated while students and teachers are struggling with the physical as well as the physiological sequels of the war. The occupation of Mosul left the City destroyed. Not a single structure is unscathed. Not a single pane of glass is unbroken. The archeological site of Nimrud, the Museum of Mosul, the Nabi Younnis Shrine, the Al Hadba Minaret and many other sites and landmarks lie in ruins. Thousands of homes are heaps of rubble. Many residents are slowly returning, the camps near the City are full. The entire education sector from pre-primary to higher education is devastated while students and teachers are struggling with the physical as well as the physiological sequels of the war.

In February 2018, the International Conference on the Reconstruction of Iraq (Kuwait City) focused on the importance of the human dimension at the heart of sustainable recovery and reconstruction. This is why the Director-General of UNESCO launched a flagship initiative “Revive the Spirit of Mosul”, focusing on the human dimension of reconstruction. With the full support of the Government of Iraq and of the UN Secretary-General, UNESCO will coordinate international efforts in two main areas: the restoration and rehabilitation of cultural heritage and the revival of educational and cultural institutions.

UNESCO has a longstanding cooperation with Iraq. It has been present in Iraq since early 2003 and has successfully accomplished a number of major cultural heritage projects, such as the restoration of the Al-Askari Shrine in Samarra, and the Revitalization of Erbil Citadel. In 2017, UNESCO, in cooperation with the Iraqi Ministry of Culture, launched the Response Plan for the Safeguarding of Cultural Heritage in the Liberated Areas of Iraq (2017-2019). "Revive the Spirit of Mosul” is a UNESCO priority for the next years. It is the most important reconstruction campaign undertaken by UNESCO in recent times. Since February, UNESCO is fully mobilized for the Mosul initiative, at its Headquarter and in its Field Offices in Bagdad and the region. The initiative is in line with the Plan for “Reconstruction and Development in Iraq” of the Iraqi Government and the Program for Recovery and Resilience in Iraq (RRP) initiated by the UN Secretary-General.

Thousands of Mosul’s population were displaced during the conflict, most of whom have returned, especially since 2017
The Old City was largely damaged, thousands of buildings have been affected, and hundreds of historical and religious ones were destroyed
 
Thousands of rare books and manuscripts, as well as artefacts from Mosul’s libraries, museums and collections were destroyed or looted by ISIL/Daesh

Where Hatred and Violence Divide, Education and Culture Federate

Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO

$50m to reconstruct Mosul

The United Arab Emirates, UNESCO and Iraq signed on the 23th April 2018 a historic agreement whereby the Emirates will provide $50,4 million to contribute to the rebuilding of the cultural heritage of Mosul.
“This is a historic partnership, the largest and unprecedented cooperation to rebuild cultural heritage in Iraq ever." (Audrey Azoulay) read more

    First International Meeting

    On 10 September 2018, UNESCO mobilized the international community for the reconstruction and recovery of Mosul, to take stock of the current situation on the ground, and to present a list of major projects that are contributing to the rehabilitation of Mosul’s heritage sites, reviving its cultural life and its educational institutions.

    UNESCO’s Flagship Initiative  

    On the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the Chambord Chateau, UNESCO and the United Nations University organized on 26 June 2019 a Round Table with eminent personalities from the realms of Middle Eastern political history, social sciences, history of art and architecture, literature, as well as a young citizen of Mosul, who will deliberate on the rebirth of Mosul and its return as the living symbol of Iraqi’s pluralistic identity. (read the programme)