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STATEMENT OF THE AMERICAN COUNCIL FOR CULTURAL POLICY
ON THE LOOTING OF THE BAGHDAD MUSEUM
April 14, 2003

 

In the wake of the initiative that it undertook with the Association of Art Museum Directors to urge the US government to take means to protect Iraq’s cultural treasures in the event of conflict, the ACCP considers the destruction and theft of Iraq’s unique material culture as an event of catastrophic magnitude for both the people of Iraq and the world as a whole. Such objects are stolen national patrimony, subject to seizure and return wherever they can be found.

The ACCP will seek to involve national and international cultural institutions, US museums, representatives of the archaeological community, members of the trade in art and private collectors, and the US government, to find ways to shut off the import of objects that may have been taken from Iraq, and to close the domestic market in such material. They urge the national governments and cultural institutions of other countries to do the same. They will actively explore ways to support Iraq’s own efforts to protect and preserve its cultural heritage, and will seek ways to help make technical and financial resources available for this purpose. They ask other US institutions to do the same.

The ACCP will also continue to explore ways to support Iraq’s own efforts to protect and preserve its cultural heritage and help Iraq find technical and financial resources for this purpose. They will ask other US foundations, organizations and institutions to do the same.

American Council for Cultural Policy

Ashton Hawkins

President

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