“The Centre is calling on all WHC member-states to agree that it be moved to UNESCO headquarters in Paris.”

Paris, 15 March 2022

Your Excellency, Ambassador and Permanent Delegate to UNESCO,

We write to you as a member of the coming 45th Session of the World Heritage Committee (WHC), planned to be held in Kazan, Russia.

Our members and leadership are outraged at the still scheduled location for the next WHC. UNESCO’s responsibility is to protect World Heritage in wartime. The continuing violence in Ukraine is a factor in WHC’s obligations.

The Centre is calling on all member-states to agree that this June, the WHC be moved to UNESCO headquarters in Paris.

We call on Your Excellency to advise your government to notify the World Heritage Centre accordingly.

As an NGO holding the status of Associate Partner to UNESCO, we will not attend the session if it is to be held this year in Russia.

Respectfully,

Dr Shimon Samuels
Director for International Relations
Simon Wiesenthal Centre

Copies of these letters have been shared with African WHC member-states by Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the Centre’s Associate Dean and Director for Global Social Action. Likewise, copies of the letters have been shared with the UN Secretary-General and relevant United Nations Delegations in New York by Eric Greenberg, the Centre’s Director of UN Relations & Strategic Partnerships.