The Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Ekmal El-Din Ihsan Oglo, on Sunday announced that an international seminar to discuss heritage sites and the importance of protecting them would be held in Cairo on January 31st.
This step has been taken as numerous heritage sites in a number of member countries, and particularly the occupied Palestinian territories, have been exposed to considerable and accelerated damage.
The seminar is to be held in cooperation with the Egyptian State Ministry for Antiquities and the Research Centre for History and Islamic Culture (ARISKA). The title of the seminar is "The Importance of Cultural Heritage and its Protection: the Islamic Vision for Civilised Heritage."
Oglo said: "Holding this seminar is a necessity at this time as some member states have witnessed much aggression against their heritage sites, such as those in Syria and Mali. Also on account of what happened recently in Tunisia when Islamic heritage sites were burnt, as well as a couple of years ago when valuable heritage in Baghdad Museum were stolen."
The seminar will discuss the continuous Israeli aggression against Islamic and Christian heritage sites in occupied Palestine, as well as the Judaisation and settlement activities which pose the greatest danger to the historic identity of Jerusalem.
Besides highlighting the importance of civilised heritage and the importance of protecting it, the idea of the seminar is based on highlighting the humanitarian and Islamic nature of this issue.
A number of prominent Islamic personalities are expected to attend the seminar, which will be inaugurated by Oglo and the Egyptian State Minister for Egyptian Antiquities, Mohamed Ibrahim. Many other intellectuals and thinkers, including Al-Azhar chief imam, Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, are expected to be in attendance.