The Baghdad Museum Project
BaghdadMuseum.org



LETTER IN SUPPORT OF
CULTURAL HERITAGE PRESERVATION IN IRAQ


To: The Baghdad Museum Project (www.BaghdadMuseum.org)

As a participant in the Rebuilding Iraq Conference in Washington, DC, December 3-4, 2003, I hereby express my interest in helping to preserve Iraq's historical, archaeological and cultural resources throughout the period of reconstruction in Iraq, and state my support for the following activities:
  1. the distribution of materials to reconstruction workforces warning them against acquiring stolen antiquities or manuscripts while in Iraq, or removing cultural property from Iraq;

  2. the efforts of Interpol, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other law enforcement agencies to retrieve cultural property stolen or illegally removed from Iraq;

  3. measures taken by countries around the world to restrict the importation of cultural objects stolen or illicitly exported from Iraq;

  4. actions taken to secure museums, libraries and archaeological sites in Iraq against looting and destruction, as well as efforts to discourage all trade in cultural property illegally removed from these locations;

  5. the laws and regulations of the governing authorities in Iraq concerning the preservation of historical, archaeological and cultural resources discovered during reconstruction projects;

  6. the development of online mapping systems and other visualization systems merging cultural heritage and reconstruction data, which can be used to coordinate reconstruction planning and cultural resource management;

  7. the development of technologies and services to harmonize the objectives and operations of the reconstruction community with those of the cultural heritage community, and to facilitate the exchange of information and case studies relevant to cultural heritage preservation among members of these communities;

  8. the development of a digital library of Iraq's cultural heritage which would incorporate cultural data collected onsite during reconstruction projects, and the methodologies used; and

  9. the global distribution of cultural data collected during reconstruction as part of a cultural exchange between the Iraqi people and the international community.
I urge all governing authorities and other agencies including the United States Congress, the Iraqi Government, the State Board of Antiquities and Heritage, the Coalition Provisional Authority, the Program Management Office, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Science Foundation, the Library of Congress, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the United Nations, and UNESCO to support these activities through direct funding and by authorizing and facilitating public-private partnerships with those interested in participating in the rebuilding of Iraq.



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