A Call to Action to Protect the World’s Cultural Heritage

New York Conference At the #CultureUnderThreat New York Forum held on September 24, 2015, at the Asia Society headquarters.

Foreign Ministers and senior government officials from around the world joined leaders of arts institutions, archaeological associations, and experts in terrorism to stop the looting and trafficking of antiquities, and halt a major source of funding for terrorism.

The host organizations the Antiquities Coalition, the Asia Society and the Middle East Institute issued a “Call to Action,” a coordinated appeal for the international community to join forces in a strategic effort to halt the trade in conflict antiquities and, in doing so, cut off potential sources of terrorist revenue.

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The coordinated appeal calls for:

  • The United Nations to formulate action plans to address “cultural cleansing”
  • The International Criminal Court to launch a war crimes investigation against those entities that engage in “cultural cleansing”
  • The international community, to support states in protecting, preserving and documenting items of cultural heritage endangered by armed conflicts
  • A global campaign to raise awareness about the purchase of conflict antiquities and terrorist financing
  • All governments to take steps to prevent the trade in conflict antiquities
  • All actors involved in the cultural property trade to be vigilant when obtaining antiquities from countries in conflict

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