Project for Mongolia (2010-2013)

Sculpture in bronze (gold) of God Lhama, stolen between 2004 and 2007 in a museum in Ulan Bator, Mongolia © INTERPOL

Strengthening Mongolian Capacities for the Fight against Illicit Traffic of Cultural Objects (2010-2013)

This three-year project aims to improve the capacities to combat the illicit trafficking of cultural property in Mongolia through the enhancement of operational capacity-building actions and awareness-raising activities.

Based on UNESCO Beijing’s experience in various Mongolian museums, the main activities focus on the implementation of capacity-building workshops for museum staff and customs officers on operational aspects of combating trafficking of cultural properties, as well as awareness-raising activities and information/data-flow capacity-building workshops for the Mongolian youth, arts dealers and museum staff. Through an agreement signed with UNESCO in November 2009, the Principality of Monaco has secured an important financial contribution for activities to be carried out in 2010-20

There are already several training workshops that have been successfully implemented in Ulaanbaatar and some others are under preparation:

  • An awareness-raising training workshop for teachers and educators (10-11 May 2010)
  • An operational training workshop on museum security and theft prevention for museum directors and curators (27-29 September 2010)
  • A training workshop for customs and police officers on the operational fight against the illicit traffic of cultural objects (5-7 October 2010).
  • An awareness-raising workshop was organized at the Zanabazar Fine Arts Museum (15-17 February 2011)
  • A normative training workshop on the negotiation of bilateral agreements for the restitution of stolen cultural objects was held from 24 to 25 May 2011. The participants were Government Officials and Museum Representatives 

Based on the capacity-building workshops organized under the current UNESCO/Monaco project in Mongolia and upon request from the authorities of Monaco, this project aims to enhance the capacities of Mongolian authorities to fight the illicit traffic of cultural objects by reviewing the current Mongolian legislation on the protection of cultural heritage and by producing tools and materials (video-clips, educational materials) to continue raising the awareness of Mongolian authorities, local communities and tourists on the importance to safeguard Mongolian cultural heritage.

The project proposal is currently prepared by UNESCO's Headquarters (Section of Museums and Cultural Objects) together with the Beijing Office, in cooperation with the Mongolian authorities (National Commission) and in coordination with Monaco’s Office of International Cooperation and the Permanent Delegation of Monaco to UNESCO.

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