Despite threats of its destruction, Odesa was placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List

Date:

Odesa was placed on UNESCO's World Heritage List

  • news by AUN News correspondent
  • Thursday, January 26, 2023
  • AUN News – ISSN: 2949-8090

Summary:

  • The judgment binds the 194 States Parties to the Convention, including Russia, to refrain from taking any intentional action that could harm the World Heritage site directly or indirectly and to support its protection.

  • Additionally, the Historic Center of Odesa has been added to the list of more than 50 world heritage sites in danger, giving it access to strengthened technical and financial international aid.

  • Ukraine may ask for this to secure the safety of the property and, in the event of an attack, to help with reconstruction.

  • Emergency actions along with the inscription process, UNESCO put in place emergency measures to help protect the site.

  • These actions are a part of UNESCO’s comprehensive action plan for Ukraine, which has already mobilized more than $18 million to protect knowledge in the face of the ongoing conflict in the country.

This decision recognizes the site’s unique, universal value and the responsibility that all people have to keep it safe.

“Reinforced defence”

Director-General of UNESCO Audrey Azoulay said, “Odessa, a free city, a world city, a legendary port that has left its mark on film, literature, and the arts, is thus placed under the increased protection of the worldwide community.”

Even though the war is still going on, our inscription shows that we all want to keep this city, which has been through a lot, from getting any worse.

The judgment tells the 194 States Parties to the Convention, which includes Russia, that they must not do anything that could directly or indirectly hurt the World Heritage site and must help protect it.

Also, the Historic Center of Odesa has been added to a list of more than 50 endangered world heritage sites. This means that it can get more technical and financial help worldwide.

Ukraine may ask for this to secure the safety of the property and, in the event of an attack, to help with reconstruction.

Expedited process

Due to the dangers that Russia’s armed troops and strange behavior posed to the city, the World Heritage Committee used an emergency procedure allowed by the World Heritage Convention.

In the summer of 2022, Italy and Greece helped UNESCO start working with Ukrainian experts to prepare the nomination.

In October 2022, Ukraine’s President Zelensky officially announced the nomination, which was looked at over the next few weeks.

Emergency actions

Along with the inscription process, UNESCO put in place emergency measures to help protect the site.

The group ensured that the damage done to the Odesa Museum of Fine Arts and the Odesa Museum of Modern Art by Russian attacks was fixed.

The bombing destroyed the once-bustling port city of Mariupol, which was hundreds of kilometers to the east. Still, the historic city in western Ukraine has not yet experienced that.

Digital preservation

With the help of the equipment that UNESCO gave, the official collection of the Odesa State Archives and about 1,000 works of art were saved digitally. Additionally, supplies were provided to safeguard the buildings and display outdoor artwork.

These actions are a part of UNESCO’s comprehensive action plan for Ukraine, which has already mobilized more than $18 million to protect knowledge in the face of the ongoing conflict in the country.

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