The phenomenon of illegal trafficking in cultural heritage has grown in the Arab region and the Middle East over the last decade, mainly due to civil unrest, armed conflicts, and natural disasters in the region. Special awareness, attention, and global coordination is paramount to combatting artifact smuggling and transit in the region and beyond.

Following the successful 2022 Cultural Heritage Workshop, Qatar National Library (QNL), which also hosts an IFLA Preservation and Conservation Centre, has teamed up with its partners (in the framework of Himaya project) to host this year’s Cultural Heritage Workshop, featuring top international multidisciplinary experts to mitigate and combat this phenomenon.

The conference includes a pre-workshop with regional, local, and international experts, as well as an open worship with top experts on cultural property, provenance, restitution, and repatriation, with on the final day special training for customs officials from Qatar and the region.

The workshop offers a valuable opportunity to take stock, and look ahead to practical steps that can be taken to intensify work to put an end to theft and trafficking, both in the region and the world, and so help deliver on the cultural rights of all.

Text adapted from the QNL website.