Unesco urges US, Iran to protect cultural sites

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PARIS: Both Iran and the United States must observe a convention obliging states to preserve cultural sites, the UN’s cultural agency said on Monday, after President Donald Trump threatened to target Iran’s cultural heritage.

Unesco director-general Audrey Azoulay highlighted that both Tehran and Washington had signed a 1972 convention prohibiting states from taking “any deliberate measures which might damage directly or indirectly the cultural and natural heritage” of other states.

At a meeting with the Iranian ambassador to the Paris-based organisation, Azoulay said that both countries had signed a 1954 convention for the protection of cultural property in the event of armed conflict, Unesco said.

Azoulay “stressed the universality of cultural and natural heritage as vectors of peace and dialogue between peoples, which the international community has a duty to protect and preserve for future generations”.

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