On 12-13 February 2021, the UNESCO Representative to Sudan, H.E. Dr. Pavel Kroupkine, participated in the Old Dongola’s Stakeholders’ Meeting, which took place in the Polish <Mission> House close to the Old Dongola archaeological site (*) in Ad Dabbah locality. The meeting was organized by the Polish Centre for Mediterranean Archaeology of the University of Warsaw in cooperation with the Sudanese National Corporation for Antiquities and Museums (NCAM). In addition to the organizers, the meeting was attended by the representatives of UNESCO Khartoum office, Qatar-Sudan Archaeological Project, EU Delegation to Sudan, Ministry of Tourism of the Northern state, and local authorities. H.E. Prof. Intisar Elzein, the Minister of Higher Education, honoured the event.
The objective of the meeting was to establish the in-circle of friends of the historical / archaeological site of Old Dongola for developing the site and the area. The main outlines for the development:
- Nominating Old Dongola as the World Heritage Site;
- Organizing zonation, conservation, and preparation to a site-tourism activities; developing a good site management plan for this;
- Organizing tourist-attracting activities, motivating a development of appropriate infrastructure and additional services; creating a good site tourism strategy for this;
- Promoting Old Dongola site in Sudan and abroad;
- Building local people capacities to contribute to the development efforts in the area, and to benefit from them.
The meeting started with the site visit, which was followed by the presentation of Mr. Peter Larsen (Geneva) the Heritage and Sustainable Development Strategy for Old Dongola.
Then the participants divide themselves in six groups to discuss the proposed outlines, and, next day to deliver the results of the group discussion to the common attention.
Finally, on 13 February 2021, the participants decided to join the nafeer (**) for developing the area.
(*) Old Dongola – historical place in the Sudanese Nile Valley, former capital of the medieval Nubian Kingdom of Makuria, containing numerous traces of both, Christian and Islamic periods of people’s life in medieval Nubia. Old Dongola is listed as a Sudanese Heritage site in accordance with the UNESCO 1972 Convention.
(**) Nafeer – the Sudanese practice of joint works of all community members for common needs, or for helping somebody to make something big (house, etc.) Nafir is listed as an element of the Sudanese Living Heritage / Intangible Cultural Heritage in accordance with the UNESCO 2003 Convention.