Centenary of World War I - UNESCO will protect the Underwater Cultural Heritage from WWI from 2014 onwards.
The Centenary of the First World War will be commemorated in 2014. For UNESCO, it is a unique occasion to draw attention to the importance of World War I cultural heritage in order to better preserve the submerged heritage sites from that period.
The Centenary of World War I is the ideal moment to remind present generations of the importance of peace and to raise knowledge about the past of World War I through the research and preservation of the heritage it left behind.
From 2014 onwards, World War I’s submerged heritage will begin to fall under the scope of the 2001 UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage.
Little is known of this important part of the cultural inheritance resulting from World War I because World War I underwater cultural heritage hasn't been comprehensively researched despite the fact that it bears witness to the horrors of such an important conflict. Therefore, UNESCO calls on its Member States, and on society, to make a bigger effort in order to achieve comprehensive preservation efforts and understand the associated legacy as a one-of-a-kind testimony of war and a convincing voice for peace.