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"War & the Responsibility to Protect Cultural Heritage" Francesco Francioni, Professor of international Law and Human Rights and Director of the Law Academy at the European University Institute

Start/End Tuesday, March 05, 2013 12:10 PM EST -- 01:10 PM EST
Location Name Jerome Greene Hall Room 104

HRI invites you to a lunch time discussion with Francesco Francioni. International Law on the protection of cultural heritage in time of war has evolved considerably in the past 15 years. The 1954 Hague Convention gained an additional (Second) Protocol in 1999 as well as a much awaited ratification by the United States in 2009; the General conference of UNESCO adopted by unanimous vote a Declaration prohibiting the intentional destruction of cultural heritage; and offences against cultural heritage are now part of the catalogue of international crimes in the Statutes of international courts and tribunals. Yet, this intense normative action has not prevented the recurrence or continuation of barbarous acts of destruction and pillage of cultural property of great importance for humanity, as the bombing of the World Heritage medieval market of Aleppo, and the extensive destruction of Muslim monuments and ancient manuscripts in Mali. This presentation proposes a two pronged approach to improving the enforcement of international cultural heritage standards: 1) enhancing the law of individual criminal liability for serious offences against cultural heritage along the model of the International Criminal tribunal for Yugoslavia, and 2) expanding the ‘Responsibility to Protect’ doctrine,as enunciated in 2005 by the UN, so as to cover situations of egregious and widespread destruction of cultural property, especially when it is part of a discriminatory and persecutory design.