The global conference, launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Francois Hollande, President of France, as a global partnership between the UAE and France.
The conference aims to support the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, UNESCO's global mandate to protect cultural heritage during armed conflicts, and to safeguard historic sites and monuments that represent civilisations.
The conference has been organised by the governments of the UAE and France in response to the growing threats to some of the world’s most important cultural resources arising from sustained periods of armed conflict, acts of terrorism and illicit trafficking of cultural property.
Over two days, the conference will host His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, Amir of Kuwait, His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Emir of Qatar, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt, Francois Hollande, President of the French Republic, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, President of Mali, Mohammed Ashraf Ghani, President of Afghanistan, and many other dignitaries and representatives.
The conference will also host key players from private and public institutions involved in world heritage conservation.
The conference’s agenda will focus on improving legal and funding mechanisms to facilitate emergency protection of heritage sites as well as post-conflict rehabilitation. It will also study the development of concrete and innovative solutions, as well as the creation of a global framework for immediate and long-term goals.
Additionally, it will launch the creation of a global network of safe havens as refuges for endangered works, and an international financial fund to sustain long term programmes to preserve cultural heritage, and build on the capacity of conservation professionals in conflict areas.
The conference will conclude with the ratification and adoption of the Abu Dhabi Declaration by the attendees.