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Moving SADC forward by combating the Illicit Trafficking of Cultural and Natural Heritage in Southern Africa

The launch event of SADCHA (Heritage Association) was officiated by the Hon. Minister Vincent Seretse of the Ministry of Trade and Industry and Mr. Jimmy Opelo, Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism of Botswana.
Check this link for more information.

IMG_6747 comp.jpg In his speech, Hon. Minister stressed that SADC HA (Heritage Association) was founded through a workshop of Museum Directors in 2010, with the support of UNESCO and that the SADCHA secretariat was established in March 2014 with the support of the National Museum of Botswana. He particularly underlined that SADCHA was founded mainly to compensate for the absence of a culture desk at SADC. He also commended the importance of the workshop “Moving SADC forward by combating the Illicit Trafficking of Cultural and Natural Heritage” and thanked UNESCO for the continuous support. Representing the Director of UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa, Mr. Damir Dijakovic, head of Culture unit, complemented Botswana Government on its commitment in hosting the SADCHA secretariat at the National Museums, and assured the Minister in UNESCO’s support to the SADCHA activities.

Participants from Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe continued the agenda for 23 and 24 April discussing the future of SADCHA.

The segment of the workshop on 25 and 26 March will be dedicated to the following objectives:

- advocate for the importance of ratifying the 1970 UNESCO and 1995 UNIDROIT Conventions as an efficient mean of preventing illicit trafficking of cultural goods;
- discuss strategies for strengthening collection management systems using in particular the example of INTERPOL's Database of Stolen Objects;
- develop strategies on how SADCHA could tackle theft and exportation of precious artifacts or cultural goods.
This part of the conference is facilitated by the experts of UNIDROIT, Ms. Marina Schneider, of INTERPOL, Mr. Fabrizio Panone and of UNESCO Harare office, Mr. Damir Dijakovic.

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Publication Date 25 Mar 2015
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