Saturday 23 September 2023

Preparations for Getting Crimea Back


          The current state of the headquarters of the               
Russian Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol.    
In Ukraine, Vice Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk made an appeal: "Ukrainians who live in Crimea are asked to leave and wait out the deoccupation in another territory", she said. It is to be expected that things will get a bit chaotic in occupied Crimea the next couple of months.

This means that those currently in charge of the collections of museums in the temporarily occupied territories in Crimea must begin now their efforts to safeguard the collections currently in their care under the provisions of the 1954 Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict [Вы знаете, что есть такое, правда?].

Since nobody outside Russia recognizes the Russian territorial claims to Crimea, any attempt to "evacuate" material to Russia will be an attempt to smuggle cultural property, and can be treated as a war-crime too (Mali provided a precedent). 

Ukraine should publish a list of the names of the people currently in charge of institutions housing cultural property (museums, libraries, archives etc.) so they should know that the world is watching them closely.   

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