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UNESCO meetings in June 2021


In June 2021, due to unfavourable epidemiological conditions, UNESCO meetings will be held in a virtual environment with the participation of the ICUA’s representatives.

The Eight Session of the Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage will be held in hybrid format from 7 to 9 June 2021. The opening ceremony of the 8MSP will take place in Tunisia with the participation of high-level representatives of the Tunisian Government and of UNESCO, H.E. Ghazi Gherairi, Ambassador and Permanent Delegate to UNESCO and the Chairperson of 7MSP held in Paris in 2019. Meetings of States Parties to the Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage are held every two years.


The Twelfth Meeting of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Body to the Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage (STAB) will be held virtually on 10 June 2021. STAB is a subsidiary organ to the Meeting of States Parties and convenes usually once a year, but operates also through missions. It is composed of 14 members, representatives of State Parties, namely Algeria (Toufik Hamoum, Chairperson), Albania, Argentina, Bulgaria (Kalin Dimitrov, Rapporteur), Egypt, Italy, France, Morocco, Mexico, Nigeria, Panama, Slovenia, Togo (Adoté Blim Blivi, Vice Chairperson) and South Africa. Six new STAB members will be elected at the meeting in June.
2021 marks the 20th anniversary of the Convention for the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage adopted in Paris at the 31st General Assembly of UNESCO. After required twenty states had ratified the Convention, it entered into force on 2 January 2009. 65 States Parties ratified the UNESCO Convention in early 2021 (Switzerland in January 2021).

The Third meeting of the Coordination Committee for the protection of the underwater cultural heritage on the Skerki Banks site will be held on 11 June 2021.
Eight States Parties to 2001 Convention are participating in the protection of the Skerki Banks archaeological site: Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, France, Italy, Morocco, Spain and Croatia (acceded in December 2019). The Ministry of Culture and Media nominated the ICUA Zadar Director Mladen Pešić as the Croatian representative in the Coordination Committee. Tunisia, as the project coordinating country, in cooperation with the UNESCO Secretariat organized the First meeting of the international consultation on the protection of Skerki Banks on 10 and 11 June 2019. The last informal online meeting was held in late April 2021.
The organization of the First Scientific Mission at Skerki Banks will be at the top of the forthcoming meeting. It will be the first campaign carried out in accordance with the guidelines adopted by the 2001 Convention and should be a prime example of promoting cooperation in the field of protection of underwater cultural heritage.
After the invitation sent to the States Parties by the UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Culture Ernesto Ottone Ramírez to provide financial support for the sustainability of the mission of this important initiative, Croatia responded and the Ministry of Culture and Media provided the necessary funds.


The Tenth meeting of the UNESCO UNITWIN network for underwater archaeology will be held on 14 June 2021. Among other topics, the meeting will consider the implementation phase of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030).
Organized by the University of Southampton (UNITWIN Network Chair) and the Secretariat of the 2001 Convention, the previous UNITWIN network meeting was also held online in September 2020.





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