13.12.2011 - UNESCO Office in Venice

Successful inauguration of Apollonia Archaeological Museum

©UNESCO/L. Bohatka - Inauguration ceremony

The Archaeological museum of Apollonia in Albania has been reopened to the public, after twenty years of closure and several months of restoration works. The inauguration ceremony took place on the 6 December in the premises of the newly renovated Apollonia Archaeological museum, Fier in the presence of the outstanding personalities from the fields of archaeology, museology and culture at large.

Aldo Bumci, Minister of Tourism, Culture, Youth and Sports, Neritan Ceka, Advisor to the Prime Minister on Culture highlighted the archaeological, museological, scientific and touristic importance of this event for the Apollonia archaeological park, as one of the main touristic destinations in the country. The UN Resident Coordinator in Albania, Zineb Touimi-Benjelloun, said: “I can only imagine the incompleteness of the cultural, historical, archaeological and touristic package offered by Apollonia as a result of the museum’s closure during this period. Museums look after the nation’s and world’s cultural property and interpret it to the public. They are not an ordinary property. It is a significant component in defining one’s cultural and historic identity, nationally and internationally. Museums provide therefore for the sharing, appreciation and understanding of our inheritance. The local and regional museums, like this one, have a role, en plus, in promoting the civic pride.”

UNESCO is considering with the relevant authorities the need to create both independence for the archaeological parks and interdependence with the necessary institutions that share the overall responsibility for their sound management and conservation”, said UNESCO Venice Office Director Engelbert Ruoss. He also took the opportunity to highlight all of the various related activities that were done in the context of the Joint Programme for the benefit of the Archaeological Park system: a Master-level program on Cultural Resource Management at Tirana University, the map guides produced at Apollonia and Antigonea archaeological parks, a report highlighting key fiscal and governance recommendations produced by the Italian expert, Sebastiano Tusa, and the training of the archaeological park managers organized in co-operation with the Italian Ministry for Cultural Goods and Activities, represented by Jeannette Padopoulos in this event.

This activity was carried out within the framework of the One UN Albania and the MDG-F Joint Programme “Culture and Heritage for Social and Economic Development”, financed by the Spanish Fund for the Achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and implemented by the Albanian Ministry of Tourism, Culture, Youth and Sports and the Albanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in cooperation with UNESCO and UNDP. 

Author(s): UNESCO Venice Press Release N°2011-02
Date : 13-12-2011

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