Syrian citizens protect their cultural heritage

© ICOM

Volunteer networks from local communities all over the country have mobilized themselves and come together with a common objective to protect their unique cultural heritage. These networks provide additional security in protecting archaeological sites from illegal excavations, and safeguarding museums from looters. They have also helped recover looted items of cultural significance.

The local community helps recover the mosaic © Prof. Abdulkarim

There is also evidence, according to local sources, that a growing number of ordinary Syria citizens are working with local heritage authorities to identify and recover cultural items that were illegally removed from their place of origin.

The local community in the village of Brhlia in the region of Barada valley, accidentally found a mosaic dating back to the late of Roman era and the beginning of the Byzantine period (around the middle of the 4th century).

The mosaic in Barada Valley © Prof. Abdulkarim

With the help of local authorities, they transported the mosaic to the Damascus national museum to be restored and studied. This type of action is happening all over the country, where the local population is assisting local authorities in tracking down looted objects.

Back to top