The Council of Ministers of Culture of South-East Europe gathered in Istanbul on 25th February to discuss the protection and sustainable management of mutual cultural heritage. Participating delegations were especially worried about the effects of terrorism on cultural heritage destinations. As a result of the meeting, a joint decision was made to increase cooperation between all the South-East European states, EU, UNESCO and other operators in the field of cultural heritage management to guarantee sustainable development in cultural matters.

”The cultural heritage that we aim to protect has been created by the joint effort of all mankind. We need to make sure our own cultural heritage is preserved for the future generations. We also need to get rid of our fears, violence, hatred and terrorism. We can reach this by increasing cooperation, reciprocal help and by restoring the respect for the universal values of mankind”, said Mr. Mahir Ünal, Minister of Culture and Tourism of Turkey.

The meeting included delegations from six countries altogether – including Albania, Bulgaria, Bosnia Herzegovina, Greece, Montenegro, Macedonia and Turkey. Also a representative of UNESCO participated the meeting.