Thursday, February 11, 2010

Macedonia Takes Steps to Protect Two Archaeology and Cultural Heritage Sites

With its latest decision, the Macedonian government created a legal framework for the protection, conservation and prohibition of the destruction of two of its cultural heritage sites – the megalithic observatory in Kokino and the Ohrid Region.

The archaeological and astronomic site of Kokino, located in north-eastern Macedonia, has been declared as a cultural heritage site of exceptional importance, the Vecher newspaper reported today.

“In order to ensure additional international value of the Kokino site, which was listed among the oldest pre-historical observatories in the world by NASA a few years ago, the government has issued a decision aimed at providing this monumental entity an internationally recognised status, or trying to enlist it in the world heritage of the prestigious organisation,” Culture Minister Elizabeta Kancheska – Milevska told the publication.

In this way, Kancheska – Milevska said, data on this site identified as a Bronze Age rite area and an observatory, so far the only in the Balkans and a rarity in Europe, will be protected permanently. At the same time, destruction of the site will be prevented.

In addition to the Kokino site, the Macedonian government took steps towards the protection of the Ohrid region, by preparing a final version of the Plan for management of natural and cultural heritage, which has been submitted to the World Heritage Committee in Paris.

“The goal of such a plan is to prevent the violation or non-implementation of UNESCO provisions on protection of cultural heritage. In parallel, we have worked on a law on management of the world natural and cultural heritage of the Ohrid Region, which has already been submitted to the government for adoption,” the Culture Minister says.

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