Event organized by UNESCO

Mosul heritage activist represents Iraq at global forum in Saudi Arabia

MOSUL, September 6 — Mosul heritage activist, Ayoub Dhanoun, is representing Iraq at the World Heritage Forum in Saudi Arabia, joining 35 activists from around the world to discuss plans for safeguarding natural and cultural heritage.

Organized by UNESCO every two years, the 2023 forum addresses a range of issues related to global heritage, climate change, sustainable tourism, diversity, and the digital dimension of heritage. The event spans over 10 days.

Over 17,000 individuals applied to participate in the forum, but only 35 activists were selected by the organization, including Dhanoun.

Dhanoun, who also serves as ambassador for the “Reviving Mosul’s Spirit” initiative, spoke to 964: “I was chosen by UNESCO as the sole representative from Iraq in this unique gathering, which focuses on global heritage. The forum carries the theme ‘Looking to the Future’ and includes workshops and sessions led by heritage experts, with the participation of 34 other heritage activists from around the world. The aim is to develop plans for the protection of natural and cultural heritage for the next five decades.”

The project aims to pave the way for the next generation of heritage specialists, providing opportunities to build capacities and train young professionals to create a sustainable future for world heritage.

“This participation is truly remarkable, as we have visited archaeological sites and museums in Saudi Arabia. In two days, we will have a session with the World Heritage Committee and will provide recommendations regarding the protection of archaeological sites,” Dhanoun added.

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