Regional meeting for strengthening administrative and legal frameworks

Press release:


ICCROM-Sharjah organizes regional meeting to strengthen administrative and legal frameworks to preserve cultural heritage

participants praised the support of Ruler of Sharjah for heritage conservation and UAE initiatives to preserve the world’s cultural heritage

The meeting calls to modernize legislation in line with international conventions and strengthen national policies to preserve cultural property


UAE, Sharjah, 24 October 2018: The Regional Meeting on “Enhancing Administrative and Legislative Frameworks for the Protection of Cultural Heritage” organized by the Regional Center for Cultural Heritage Conservation in the Arab World (ICCROM – Sharjah), with support from the Swiss government, and the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development in the UAE, discussed the significance of the United Arab Emirates initiatives aimed at preserving cultural heritage and the dissemination of heritage culture amid generations.

The participants from 18 countries from the Arab Region and 3 from Sub-Saharan Africa praised the role of Emirate of Sharjah under the leadership of H.H. Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, Member of Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, in promoting cultural heritage as well as the development of programs and mechanisms that contribute to its preservation.

Aiming to form a working group to formulate and follow up on viable practical procedures, this meeting included international organizations, a number of heritage departments officials and representatives of heritage institutions, a number of legal experts, and representatives of regional and international organizations involved in protecting cultural heritage and fighting illicit trafficking such as UNESCO, Unidroit, and Interpol.

Dr. Zaki Aslan, Director of the Regional Center for Cultural Heritage Conservation in the Arab World (ICCROM-Sharjah) stated that “This meeting reflects ICCROM-Sharjah objectives in enhancing regional and international cooperation of all the parties concerned for the protection of cultural heritage and to devise mechanisms that ensure the safeguard of heritage resources”.


He pointed out the importance of the meeting, which discusses methods of protecting cultural heritage against deliberate destruction and illegal trafficking.

 The meeting tackled methods of developing scientific and specialized capabilities, and stressed on the importance of establishing comprehensive national databases for museums’ collections.

The participants discussed the cultural policies and administrative and legal frameworks, and their effectiveness in protecting cultural heritage from deliberate destruction, and challenges facing the enforcement of the law due to databases inadequacy.

 The participants reviewed the conservation legislative tools recently issued in Palestine, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Egypt, highlighting their experience in protecting cultural and urban heritage.

International conventions on cultural property were discussed, as well as recent UN Security Council resolutions, and the obstacles facing their implementation.

Participants addressed issues of capacity building in several fields including in judicial proceedings for the repatriation of looted or illegally exported artifacts, inventorying and documentation of museum collections as well as Immovable heritage.