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Arab League Calls for Protecting Arab Heritage amid Rising Regional Chaos | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit attends the Arab Foreign Ministers extraordinary meeting to discuss the Syrian crisis in Cairo, Egypt December 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

Cairo – Arab League Chief Ahmed Aboul Gheit called for the protection of Arab heritage in light of the chaos ravaging the region, stressing that “Al-Aqsa Mosque is purely related to Islamic and Arab heritage in accordance with the decision of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).”

The “Arab Document Day” plays a vital role in advocating the historical rights of the Palestinian people and shedding light on the theft, forgery, and distortion the Palestinian heritage is subjected to, added the chief.

Arab Document Day is an annual celebration held to highlight the status of the Arab document that keeps in its records Arab national rights.

This year’s theme was “The Palestinian Cause: 100 Years of Balfour Declaration and 50 Years of the Israeli Occupation.”

A large number of officials, Arab culture and heritage academics partake in the event.

Aboul Gheit explained that preserving the Palestinian identity and its documents is to preserve the Arab identity from attempts to distort it, to blur its features and to falsify historical facts.

The Arab League Chief referred to the importance of the achievement of Palestinian reconciliation in terms of strengthening the Palestinian position both internally and in dealing with the outside world.

He also called on parties to end the division which long affected the Palestinian cause over the last decade, and worked to the Israeli occupation’s best interest.

Addressing the ceremony, Aboul Gheit called for maximizing efforts to protect Arab cultural heritage from destruction, plunder, and theft which increased over the recent years during internal wars and conflicts in some Arab countries.

“The current Arab situation; suffering conflicts and wars, led to an unprecedented state of instability, division, and chaos experienced by some of the Arab countries–These disputes have resulted in extremist terrorist organizations igniting sectarianism,” criticized Aboul Gheit.

“Terrorist and extremist groups have destroyed valuable human heritage in countries experiencing wars,” he said.

He also urged collectively working to develop a model Arab law to protect heritage and cultural archives from degradation and loss—in addition to establishing legal frameworks to protect them from exploitation.