We present a comprehensive analysis of the concept of cultural heritage and the institutionalisation of its protection by the international law in various historical contexts of involved states, i.e., during peace, conflict, social and/or political crisis. Furthermore, we discuss the human dimension of the protection of cultural heritage at an international level under the public international law. In particular, we first investigate whether states remain central actors at national and international level as far as the protection of cultural property within their territory is concerned. Subsequently, we examine the limitations imposed on the action range of a state due to primary and secondary legislation of international organizations where the state participates. Apart from this form of external pressure on the state jurisdiction, we also examine whether the action range of a state is further limited by the action of individuals and groups. Furthermore, we discuss on the potential role of international human rights law in such situations, the interdependence between the protection of individuals and cultural goods as well as whether the individual is transformed into an active actor of international law.
Our analysis clearly suggests that international organizations play a catalytic role in cultural protection at an international level, with UNESCO holding a leading position. UNESCO forms a central processing mechanism for international protection standards and seems to be the main forum for monitoring compliance of states with international protection standards. However, an issue that certainly deserves further investigation is whether UNESCO can be actually efficient in the absence of ratification mechanisms regarding cultural protection.Our approach and methodology involves thorough analysis of concepts, review of historical developments in international law regarding the protection of cultural heritage, review of the activities of international organizations as well as the description of the existing legal framework. Results of our study suggest that the issue of cultural heritage protection is multidimensional and involves not only states but also individuals who are holders of rights and obligations regarding cultural heritage protection. In addition, our results clearly imply that there is still room for improvement in the continuously evolving international law towards the establishment of a more satisfactory framework for the protection of cultural heritage.
Publication Date : April 30, 2017
|EndNote||%0 International E-Journal of Advances in Social Sciences THE INTERNATIONAL LAW ON THE PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE %A Katerina PAPAİOANNOU %T THE INTERNATIONAL LAW ON THE PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE %D 2017 %J IJASOS- International E-journal of Advances in Social Sciences %P 2411-183X-2411-183X %V 3 %N 7 %R doi: 10.18769/ijasos.309684 %U 10.18769/ijasos.309684|