The Destruction of Cultural Property in the Syrian Conflict: Legal Implications and Obligations

International Journal of Cultural Property (2016) 23: 1– 31

Posted: 12 Apr 2016

See all articles by Emma Cunliffe

Emma Cunliffe

Newcastle University

Nibal Muhesen

University of Copenhagen

Marina Lostal

Essex University, School of Law

Date Written: February 20, 2016

Abstract

This article comes as the conflict in Syria has entered its fifth year, bringing with it loss of life and the displacement of the Syrian people as well as extensive damage to, and destruction of, the country’s cultural heritage. This article will first provide an overview and explanation of the national and international legal framework for protecting cultural property in conflict as it applies to the Syrian State and the non-State actors involved, using examples from the whole conflict, including the recent actions of Da’esh. Second, we demonstrate that the destruction of all types of cultural property, regardless of its importance, can be considered a prosecutable violation of these laws, and we examine the possibilities for prosecution. Following from this discussion, we question whether the existing framework can be considered effective and consider the role the international heritage community can play.

Keywords: Cultural heritage, Syria, Da'esh, prosecution

Suggested Citation

Cunliffe, Emma and Muhesen, Nibal and Lostal, Marina, The Destruction of Cultural Property in the Syrian Conflict: Legal Implications and Obligations (February 20, 2016). International Journal of Cultural Property (2016) 23: 1– 31, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2762264

Nibal Muhesen

University of Copenhagen ( email )

Nørregade 10
Copenhagen, København DK-1165
Denmark

Marina Lostal (Contact Author)

Essex University, School of Law ( email )

Colchester
Colchester, CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.linkedin.com/in/marinalostal

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
657
PlumX Metrics