National Consultations on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage and the UNESCO 2001 Convention in Central Asia 1-3 December 2021

22 November 2021

As a follow up to the first Regional Meeting on the protection and management of Underwater Cultural Heritage in Central Asia and the Caspian Sea region held in May 2019 in Almaty, Kazakhstan, the UNESCO Office in Almaty in cooperation with the Secretariat of the 2001 Convention, continues national consultations with local authorities from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.

The 2019 Almaty Meeting uncovered the potential of the regions underwater cultural heritage and identified the threats it is facing due to the lack of appropriate infrastructures within competent authorities for its identification, study, evaluation, protection, public presentation, and management. National laws concerning the protection of cultural heritage do notnecessarily have the appropriate provisions to consider the specificities of archaeological sites found in submerged contexts. Following the regional meeting, with local authorities, the national consultations will further clarify the key concepts and questions on underwater cultural heritage protection. Legal issues concerning ratification of the UNESCO 2001 Convention and harmonization of national legal frameworks will also be discussed.

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