United Nations

A/50/498


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

3 October 1995

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH/FRENCH


Fiftieth session
Agenda item 22


RETURN OR RESTITUTION OF CULTURAL PROPERTY
TO THE COUNTRIES OF ORIGIN

Note by the Secretary-General


  The Secretary-General has the honour to  transmit to the General  Assembly
the  report  of  the Director-General  of  the  United Nations  Educational,
Scientific  and  Cultural  Organization  on  the  Return  or restitution  of
cultural property to the countries of  origin, in accordance with resolution
48/15 of 2 November 1993.



























95-29668 (E)   161095  191095/...
*9529668*
 ANNEX

               Report of the Director-General of the United Nations
               Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization on
               the action taken by the organization on the return of
               cultural property to the countries of origin or its
restitution in case of illicit appropriation


1.  Since  the previous  report by  the Director-General,  submitted to  the
General Assembly at  its forty-eighth session (A/48/466, annex), the  United
Nations  Educational,  Scientific  and  Cultural  Organization  (UNESCO) has
continued to  promote the  return of cultural  property to the  countries of
origin as well as  its restitution in case  of illicit appropriation through
the holding, in particular, of the  eighth session of the  Intergovernmental
Committee for Promoting the Return of Cultural Property  to its Countries of
Origin or its Restitution in Case of Illicit  Appropriation. 1/  UNESCO  has
particularly sought  to apply the  recommendations of the  Intergovernmental
Committee for Promoting  the Return of Cultural Property to its Countries of
Origin or  its Restitution in  Case of  Illicit Appropriation at  its eighth
session,  held at Paris  from 24 to 27  May 1994.  It  will be recalled that
these  recommendations  were  based  on progress  achieved  since  the first
session of  the Committee  in 1980.  This  report describes the work  of the
Committee at  its eighth  session and  the measures taken  to implement  the
recommendations   of  the   Committee   at   the  eighth   session.      The
recommendations  adopted   by  the  Committee  at  the  eighth  session  are
contained in appendix I.


              I.  PROMOTION OF BILATERAL NEGOTIATIONS FOR THE RETURN
                  OR RESTITUTION OF CULTURAL PROPERTY

2.  The secretariat  reported to the  Committee on two cases pending  before
the opening of  the eighth  session.   With respect to  the claim by  Turkey
against Germany  for  restitution of  a sphinx  from Boguskoy,  negotiations
were continuing between the two countries.

3.   With regard to  the Parthenon Marbles,  the United  Kingdom authorities
had reviewed the matter,  but had not modified their position:  namely, that
the Marbles had  been legally acquired and that,  as the British Museum  was
the owner of the Marbles, expropriation  would be regarded as  confiscatory.
The  Greek authorities submitted a  short history of  the issue and disputed
the  statement that  the Marbles  had been  legally  acquired.   The British
Committee  for the  Return of  the Parthenon  Marbles, on  being  invited to
express its views, stated that it was in  favour of their return to  Greece.
The secretariat would seek further information  on the legal arguments  made
by the United Kingdom, with a view to  obtaining a more detailed explanation
of those aspects which  had not previously been  before the Committee.  Both
Greece and the United Kingdom accepted that procedure.

4.   No  other  claims  had been  brought  before  the Committee  since  the
previous  report.    The  Committee  had  not  adopted  any  recommendations
regarding cases under negotiation.
  5.   The authorities of member  States   informed the Committee of various
cases. One such case  was that of a  donation made  to the Polish State  and
deposited  in the  Museum of  Lviv,  a city  that was  no  longer  on Polish
territory, others  being the  case of  the Metropolitan  Museum (New  York),
which  had returned  the  Lydian Hoard,  and that  of  the donation  by  the
Brooklyn Museum  (New York)  of a  Roman sarcophagus  stolen from  Turkey in
1986 to  an American-Turkish  foundation, which  would return  it to  Turkey
after two years.  The Guatemalan and Bolivian authorities also informed  the
Committee of  the excellent  cooperation of  the Governments  of the  United
States  and Canada  in certain  specific  cases  (case brought  by Guatemala
before an Illinois court and the textiles from the community of Coroma).


II.  INTERNATIONAL TECHNICAL COOPERATION

6.  With regard  to international cooperation the  secretariat reported on a
general   study,  submitted   to   the  UNESCO   Executive  Board,   on  the
reinforcement of the action taken by the organization  for the protection of
cultural heritage.  An  outline was  given  of  the assistance  sought  from
UNESCO for the protection of cultural property, including movable  property,
in time of armed conflict,  and of current efforts to improve the working of
the  Convention for  the Protection  of  Cultural Property  in the  Event of
Armed  Conflict  (The  Hague  Convention  of   1954).  UNESCO  continued  to
participate in the  work of UNIDROIT  2/ on  a legal  instrument that  would
complement  the 1970 UNESCO  Convention by  dealing with  aspects of private
law.   Other multilateral efforts to  obtain the return of cultural objects,
such as the European  Union Directive and Regulation  and the scheme  of the
English-speaking  countries  of  the  Commonwealth,  were  described.    The
secretariat  had attended  a number  of  international meetings  to  broaden
knowledge of the Convention and the work of  the Committee, and was  working
in  cooperation  with other  bodies  on  coordination  and  the exchange  of
computerized information on cultural objects.

7.   The Italian  authorities informed  the Committee that Italy  was both a
country  where  cultural property  was  stolen  and  one  in which  cultural
property  acquired illegally  was traded.    The  fight against  the illicit
traffic in  cultural property should  take three forms:   the improvement of
legal  protection; the  computerized inventorying  of cultural  property  (5
million  files were currently  available on  the Italian  heritage); and the
creation  of operational  structures  within  national police  forces.   The
Italian  authorities  wanted  to  see  an   international  fund  set  up  to
facilitate  the restitution  of stolen  cultural property.   Many  speakers,
members of the  Committee, supported  the establishment of  such a fund  and
said  that it  had already  been the  subject of  an article of  the "Arusha
Appeal". 

8.   A  number of  problems encountered  by member  States relating  to  the
illicit  traffic  in  cultural  property  were brought  to  the  Committee's
attention.  One such  case was that  of the huge archaeological  excavations
in Sri  Lanka, where clandestine excavators  often set to  work more quickly
than  the archaeologists,  another being  that  of  the Kathmandu  Valley in
Nepal, where objects were stolen with a view to illicit export. 

 9.   The Committee's support was  sought in order to resolve the problem of
the restitution of cultural property to  Kuwait in the wake of the Gulf War.
The documentation  concerning the  items had been  destroyed, rendering  the
process of restitution very difficult.

10.   The  Committee was  informed of  the situation  regarding the  illicit
traffic in cultural  property in Lebanon  in the  aftermath of  17 years  of
armed conflict.  During a  bombardment in  1982, 43  crates of  objets d'art
belonging  to the National  Museum of  Beirut had  been destroyed,  and many
other items had been stolen and were now on the international art market.

11.  With regard  to Iraq, the  Committee was informed of major  thefts from
provincial  museums.  The thefts had been reported in  a press release and a
notice  of  stolen  objects  relating  to  them  was  being  prepared.   The
Committee was  also informed  of the  existence  of large-scale  clandestine
excavations in the territory of Iraq. 

12.   The Committee  was  informed of  the recent  successful resolution  of
cases  involving  the  restitution  of  cultural  property  as  a  result of
collaboration  between the  authorities  of the  United  States  and several
South  American  and  European  countries.    Those  cases  now  constituted
valuable legal  precedents which would  be very useful  in the  future.  The
Committee  was  also  informed  of  the   agreement  reached  by  the  Greek
Government with  Michael Ward, which would  ultimately result  in the return
of the Aidonian tomb  treasure to Greece.  The Committee was also briefed on
the work  done by the  United States  Information Agency  (USIA), which  was
taking  an active  role in  the prevention  of illicit  traffic and  in  the
return of  property that had entered United States territory illegally.  The

Committee  was  given  a  description  of  the  role  played  by  the  State
Department,  which operated  a specialized  service acting  as  intermediary
between  the various  holders of  objects  (whether institutions  or private
citizens)  and the  Governments of  the  countries in  which they  had  been
illicitly acquired. 

13.   The  secretariat of  UNIDROIT briefly  outlined the  background to the
draft  convention  and  described  the  various  stages  leading  up  to its
adoption.   At the request of several countries the  UNIDROIT Convention had
been  translated  into Spanish.    The  UNIDROIT  Convention  on Stolen  and
Illegally Exported Cultural  Objects was adopted  at a diplomatic conference
held on 24 June 1995 in Rome, and had already been signed by 11 States.


III.  STEPS TO CURB TRAFFIC IN CULTURAL PROPERTY

14.  The  secretariat informed the Committee  that efforts to combat illicit
traffic in cultural property  had resulted in an  increase in the  number of
States parties to the 1970  Convention from 71 to 81,  the distribution of a
number of notices  concerning stolen cultural  property among States parties
to  the  Convention  and  the  holding  of  regional  workshops  at  Jomtien
(Thailand), Keszthely  (Hungary) and Arusha  (United Republic of  Tanzania),
and that  a national workshop had  been held in Phnom  Penh.  The  Committee
was also  informed that commercial databases  were being set  up which could
be used in the fight against illicit traffic in cultural property.
  15.     The  secretariat   also  reported   on  the   growing  number   of
international, national and private initiatives to  draw up lists of  stolen
cultural property that might  turn up on the  international art market.  The
time  had come  to set  up a  central database  concerning lost  and  stolen
property, which would benefit all member States.

16.  In  accordance with the third  recommendation adopted by the  Committee
at its  seventh session, ICOM 3/ had, at the secretariat's request, prepared
a  study concerning  the  question  of inventories  in the  area  of illicit
traffic  in  cultural  property.    The  observer  for  ICOM  gave  a  brief
presentation  of the  document  entitled National  Inventories  of  Cultural
Property.  The Museum  viewpoint.  Annexed to the  document was a draft form
proposed by the International Documentation Committee  of ICOM for use  when
drawing up a computerized list of art objects.

17.  The  computerized inventory  of cultural  property stolen  in Italy  or
that might  be available  on the  Italian art  market was  presented to  the
Committee.   It had  been drawn  up by  the special  services of  the police
force  (Carabinieri/Nucleo  per  la  tutela  di  patrimonio);  the  system's
effectiveness was  illustrated by reference to  specific cases.   The system
could be useful to  States wishing to equip their own national police forces
with modern documentation resources.

18.  The Committee  was given details  about the situation in Ethiopia  with
regard to the illicit  traffic in cultural property.  Many objects of  great
value to  Ethiopia's heritage were  completely unprotected because they were
used in everyday social  and religious life.  More effective means should be
found  to  coordinate  efforts  to  secure  the  return  and  restitution of
cultural property. Reference was made to  certain Ethiopian items that  were
currently held  abroad, including the royal  treasure, the stela of Axum and
the famous icon "The stigmata of Christ".

19.  The Interpol  secretariat informed the  Committee of what it was  doing
to  combat illicit  traffic  in cultural  property.   It  pointed  out  that
Interpol  issued regular notices  based on  its computerized  file of stolen
property; the latter  was updated on  the basis of the  information received
from police forces in its  member States.  Interpol  also organized training
courses for  police on  the prevention  of illicit  trafficking in  cultural
property.

20.   Prevention and training  continued to be  very important  in the fight

against  illicit trafficking;  that applied to all  States, but particularly
to the countries of Africa.   The situation of Mali in respect of the  fight
against the illicit traffic in cultural  property was very interesting,  for
Mali  was the first  State in  Africa to have concluded  agreements with the
United States  relating to  the importation  of cultural  property that  had
been illicitly exported from its country of origin.

21.   It was very important to have transit and market States represented on
the Committee.   It  would also  be very  useful to  prepare a  multilingual
glossary of legal  terms to assist the  authorities of States preparing  new
legislation.

 22.  The  Committee adopted a  number of  recommendations (see appendix  I)
concerning  steps to  curb illicit  trafficking  in  cultural property.   In
accordance  with  Recommendation  I.4, a  consultant  has  been assigned  to
examine the possibility of establishing a  network of databases on  cultural
objects; he is currently working on this project.

23.  In accordance with Recommendation  1.5 (i), the Director-General issued
a further appeal to all  States to become parties to  the Convention on  the
Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the  Illicit Import, Export and Transfer
of Ownership  of Cultural  Property, 1970.   The appeal,  dated 31  December
1994, was widely distributed;  it was also circulated as an information note
at the 146th session of the Executive Board.

24.   In  accordance with  Recommendation  1.5 (ii),  which called  for  the
promotion  of regional  conferences on  illicit traffic,  preparations  have
been made for  a UNESCO/ICOM workshop on illicit traffic in cultural objects
in Latin American  countries.  The workshop which  had been scheduled to  be
held  in Cuenca, Ecuador  from 6  to 9  February 1995,  had to  be postponed
because of  the situation  in the  country at  the time but  eventually took
place from 10  to 16  September 1995.   The draft  programme and budget  for
1996-1997 includes provision for further regional workshops.

25.  In accordance with Recommendation  2, the draft Convention  prepared by
UNIDROIT, which previously existed only in  English and French, these  being
the  two  working  languages  of  UNIDROIT,  was  translated  by  the UNESCO
secretariat  into the other  four working languages of  UNESCO.  These texts
were provided to  UNIDROIT, which  was to give  them wide distribution,  and
were  also reproduced  in document  146  EX/48 which  was circulated  to all
States  members of  UNESCO.   The  translations of  the  final text  of  the
Convention in  all six languages of UNESCO is contained  in documents 28C/35
and 28C/35  Add. concerning  implementation  of the  1970 UNESCO  Convention
considered at the twenty-eighth session of the UNESCO General Conference.

26.   In accordance  with Recommendation  2.2, the  secretariat prepared  an
analysis  of the UNIDROIT  draft Convention  on the  International Return of
Stolen or Illegally Exported Cultural Objects  and the UNESCO Convention  on
the  Means of  Prohibiting and  Preventing  the  Illicit Import,  Export and
Transfer of  Ownership of  Cultural Property, showing  the similarities  and
differences  between them. This  study, which  is contained  in document 146
EX/48,  was  distributed  to  all  States  members  of  UNESCO  and  also to
UNIDROIT.  It was updated following the adoption of  the UNIDROIT Convention
(UNESCO document 28C/35 Add.).

27.   In  accordance with  Recommendation  4.1,  the secretariat  prepared a
study of  the advantages  and disadvantages  of export  permits; the  study,
which is  contained in  annex I  to document  146 EX/48, was  distributed to
States members of UNESCO and also sent to UNIDROIT.

28.  Recommendation 5 (5) invited  the Director-General to have  specialized
studies  undertaken  by  archaeologists,  conservators,  architects,  museum
experts, dealers,  cultural administrators and lawyers  in order to  clarify
issues which are currently  disputed or unclear  with a view to having  such
studies  examined  by  a  committee  of  experts  which  would  draft policy
guidelines for the future conduct of  the trade in cultural property.   As a

first step a consultant has been engaged to:

  (a)  Determine whether it is possible and/or  desirable to make it  easier
for  collectors  to  acquire antiquities.    This  will  include considering
whether  there  is any  problem in  breaking  up a  collection whatever  the
collection, only some  collections, or none; whether there are in fact great
collections in  reserves which could be  made available  and whether dealers
would be interested in handling material of medium quality;

  (b)    Indicate how  to distinguish  recently discovered  antiquities from
those which have been in circulation for many years;

  (c)   Explain what is  meant by the word "stolen" and  whether it can also
be  applied  to  clandestine  excavations  where  the  antiquities  are  the
property of the State,  and to clarify the relationship between "theft"  and
"illegal export";

  (d)  Analyse to what extent dealers can police the trade;

  (e)   State in what areas  cooperation between  archaeologists and dealers
could be envisaged.

29.   In accordance  with Recommendation 5.6,  consultations are  continuing
with dealers  on  the proposed  international  code  of ethics  for  further
consideration at the next meeting of the Committee.


IV.  PUBLIC INFORMATION

30.  The secretariat continued to publicize  the Committee's work by issuing
press  releases, taking  part in  news  and  current affairs  programmes and
maintaining numerous  contacts with the media  as a whole.   The public  was
showing increasing  concern regarding illicit trafficking; it was noted that
the press  file prepared for the eighth session had doubled in size over the
previous session,  indicating that there had  been a very  great increase in
public interest.

31.  ICOM gave a brief  account of what ICOM was doing in the way of  public
information  activities,  citing  the collection  of  publications  entitled
"One-hundred missing  objects".  The first  issue, on  Cambodia, had already
proved  very effective.   ICOM  argued for  an  increase in  UNESCO's budget
allocation to deal with illicit trafficking.
Notes

  1/  The following States members  of the Intergovernmental Committee  took
part in the eighth session:   Angola, Bangladesh, Czech Republic, Sri Lanka,
Ecuador,   Ethiopia,   Greece,  Guatemala,   Italy,   Kuwait,   Libyan  Arab
Jamahiriya, Namibia, Nepal, Peru, Poland,  Republic of Korea, Turkey, United
Republic of Tanzania and Zaire.

  2/     International  Institute   for  the  Unification  of   Private  Law
(UNIDROIT).

  3/  International Council of Museums (ICOM).
APPENDIX I

Recommendations adopted by the Intergovernmental Committee at its
eighth session, held in Paris, France, from 24 to 27 May 1994


Recommendation No. 1

  The  Intergovernmental Committee  for  Promoting the  Return  of  Cultural
Property to its Countries  of Origin or  its Restitution in Case of  Illicit
Appropriation,

  Recalling that the United Nations General  Assembly and the UNESCO General
Conference  have passed a  series of  resolutions concerning  the return and
restitution of cultural property,

  Recalling  that the  Regional Workshop on  the Convention on  the Means of
Prohibiting  and  Preventing  the Illicit  Import,  Export  and Transfer  of
Ownership  of Cultural  Property held  in Jomtien,  Thailand, from  24 to 28
February 1992, and the International Workshop  on the Protection of Artistic
and Cultural  Patrimony held  in Courmayeur, Italy,  June 1992,  recommended
various  measures  to  realize  the  objectives  of  the   Intergovernmental
Committee for  Promoting the Return of Cultural Property to its Countries of
Origin or its Restitution  in Case of Illicit  Appropriation, inter alia, an
appeal to Member States,  which have not  yet ratified it to become  parties
to  the  UNESCO  1970 Convention  and  the  establishment  of  a  network of
databases on illicit traffic in cultural property,

  Also recalling  that  this Committee  at  its  seventh session  adopted  a
recommendation urging the UNESCO Secretariat to expand its cooperation  with
the United Nations in establishing databases  on illicit traffic in cultural
property,

  Considering that in bilateral negotiations for the  return and restitution
of  cultural property  both parties'  cooperation in  exchanging prompt  and
accurate information  on  the property  to  be  returned and  restituted  is
essential for the successful conclusion of the negotiations,

  1.    Invites States  Parties to  the  Convention to  implement fully  the
provisions of the Convention and the aforementioned recommendations;

  2.  Urges  Member States which  have not  yet ratified  the Convention  to
become parties to it as soon as practicable;

  3.    Appeals  to all  Member  States that  they  cooperate in  exchanging
information on the cultural objects to be returned or restituted;

  4.    Invites  the  Director-General  to  explore  the  possibilities   of
establishing  a universal network  of databases  on cultural  objects at the
Secretariat;

  5.  Also invites the Director-General  to take initiatives in implementing
the Convention, such as:
    (i)making a second appeal to Member States;

    (ii)convening or encouraging  international and regional conferences  on
the return and restitution  of cultural property,  as has already been  done
with  the holding  of the  Arusha  workshop  in collaboration  with ICOM  in
September 1993; and

   (iii)examining  ways of encouraging private owners to  give public access
to private collections of important cultural property;

    (iv)also examining ways of  encouraging private owners to treat cultural
property in  their possession  in accordance  with the  norms of  scientific
conservation techniques.


Recommendation No. 2

  The  Intergovernmental Committee  for  Promoting the  Return  of  Cultural
Property to its Countries  of Origin or its  Restitution in Case  of Illicit
Appropriation,

  Recalling that Recommendation No. 2 of the Committee's seventh session:

  (i)underlined  the  fact  that  the  draft  Convention  of  UNIDROIT  (the
International Institution  for the Unification of  Private Law)  should be a

useful  addition to  action  under  the UNESCO  Convention on  the  Means of
Prohibiting  and  Preventing  the  Illicit Import,  Export  and  Transfer of
Ownership of Cultural Property, 1970; and

    (ii)stressed  the need to  ensure a link between  the UNIDROIT draft and
the UNESCO Convention;

  1.   Takes note  of the report  of the  Secretariat (CLT-93/CONF.203/2 and
203/2  Add.) which  informs  the Committee  of the  elaboration  of  a draft
UNIDROIT  Convention  on the  international return  of  stolen or  illegally
exported cultural objects;

  2.   Invites  the Director-General  to  bring  the UNIDROIT  draft to  the
attention of  the members  of UNESCO with  the addition of  a full  analysis
which  would  underline  the complementarity  between both  texts  and would
indicate the differences which exist between  the UNESCO Convention and  the
UNIDROIT draft;

  3.   Further  invites the  Director-General  to  study with  UNIDROIT  the
distribution of the text of  the draft in all the  working languages of  the
Organization;

  4.   Renews its appeal to  Member States to give  full attention to  every
article of  the UNIDROIT  draft Convention  and  to make  comments on  these
matters in  order for them  to be  brought to  the attention  of the  Member
States  prior  to  the  meeting  of   the  diplomatic  conference  which  is
anticipated for the discussion and possible adoption of the UNIDROIT draft.

  Recommendation No. 3

  The  Intergovernmental Committee  for  Promoting the  Return  of  Cultural
Property to its  Countries of Origin or its  Restitution in Case of  Illicit
Appropriation,

  Conscious of  the need  to promote  a policy  of active  cooperation which
will reinforce  the relations  between those countries  importing and  those
exporting  cultural  objects with  the common  aim  of preserving  universal
cultural values,

  Equally  convinced that  the preservation  of the  cultural  identities of
peoples is only possible by ensuring  a close relationship between  cultural
objects and the environment which has produced them,

  Noting that the 1970 Paris Convention  establishes the legal structure  to
facilitate  the  restitution  of  stolen  or  illegally  exported   cultural
objects,

  Also  noting that  the  draft  UNIDROIT  Convention would  complement  the
abovementioned Convention by facilitating its practical implementation,

  Aware of  the fact  that often  considerations of  a financial  character,
especially  for countries whose  resources are  limited, are obstacles which
can  (and  sometimes  do)  prevent  the  restitution  of  such  objects,  in
particular for the  establishment of receiving institutions, and in  respect
of legal costs and transport,

  Endorsing the Arusha  Appeal of  the ICOM/UNESCO  Regional Workshop  which
desires the creation of an international  fund, "to finance the  acquisition
of stolen property and  its restitution to museums and communities when  the
national or international legislations do not provide for this",

  1.    Invites   the  Director-General  to   examine  the   possibility  of
establishing an  international fund  at UNESCO  which would  be financed  by
voluntary  contributions, public  and private,  intended to  facilitate  the
restitution of  stolen  or  illicitly exported  cultural objects,  in  cases
where  the countries  concerned are  unable  to  meet the  related financial

costs; and

  2.  Further invites the Director-General to report  on this matter to  the
General Conference  at its  next session for  the possible  launching of  an
appeal to the international community to this effect.


Recommendation No. 4

  The  Intergovernmental Committee  for  Promoting the  Return  of  Cultural
Property to its  Countries of Origin or its  Restitution in Case of  Illicit
Appropriation,

  Endorsing the  recommendations adopted  at the  International Workshop  on
the Protection  of Artistic and Cultural  Patrimony held  in Courmayeur, Val
d'Aoste, Italy, from 25 to 27 June 1992,

   Taking  into account  Recommendation  No.  1 (vii)  which  suggests  that
Governments should consider  establishing regulations  whereby any  imported
cultural object  should be accompanied  by an  export permit  issued by  the
relevant authorities of the country of origin,

  Taking  also into account  Recommendation No.  1 (x)  which envisages that
the Director-General,  in consultation with  Governments and in  cooperation
with relevant organizations, should  explore the possibility  of creating an
internationally recognized  licensing system  for art  dealers, which  would
serve  to  weed  out  the  criminal  elements  of  an  otherwise respectable
professional group,

  1.   Invites the  Director-General of UNESCO  to prepare,  if necessary in
collaboration with  international and  regional  intergovernmental and  non-
governmental organizations,  a document which would  analyse all aspects  of
establishing  an export permit  issued by  the competent  authorities of the
country of origin as  well as the creation  of an internationally recognized
licensing system for art dealers; and

  2.   Further invites the Director-General  to distribute  this document to
Member States before the meeting of  the scheduled diplomatic conference for
the  discussion and possible  adoption of  the UNIDROIT  draft Convention on
the International Return of Stolen or Illegally Exported Cultural Objects.


Recommendation No. 5

  The  Intergovernmental Committee  for  Promoting the  Return  of  Cultural
Property to its Countries  of Origin or  its Restitution in Case of  Illicit
Appropriation,

  Referring  to the  "Feasibility of  an  International  Code of  Ethics for
Dealers in Cultural  Property for the  Purpose of More Effective  Control of
Illicit Traffic in Cultural Property",

  Convinced that cooperation of auctioneers, dealers  and others involved in
the buying and selling of cultural objects is  essential for the control  of
illicit traffic in cultural property,

  1.   Invites  States to  encourage the  adoption of  a code  of ethics  by
dealers in  cultural objects  or to  ensure that  they  have legislation  in
place  to  regulate  the  activities  of  dealers  together  with  those  of
conservators and restorers;

  2.  Invites  States, where within a State  dealers have adopted a code  of
ethics which includes provisions designed to prevent their participation  in
the  illicit  trade, to  establish  which dealers  are  not  covered  by the
provisions of this code, and to  adopt legislation regulating the  behaviour
of these dealers;

  3.  Invites  States where within  a State  dealers have adopted a  code of
ethics,  to give consideration  to its  enforceability, the  adequacy of its
provisions, its dissemination to all  interested parties and generally (e.g.
through UNESCO)  and access to  some enforcement procedures  on the part  of
parties aggrieved;

  4.   Invites  States  to  consider  the adoption,  in  concert with  other
States, of standard format export certificates;

  5.    Invites the  Director-General to  undertake  specialized studies  by
archaeologists, conservators, architects, museum experts, dealers,  cultural
administrators and  lawyers in order to  clarify issues  which are currently
disputed or  unclear and  that such  studies be  examined by a  committee of
experts which would draft  policy guidelines for the  future conduct of  the
trade; and

  6.    Further  invites  the  Director-General to  include  an  item on  an
international code of ethics for dealers in the  agenda of the ninth session
of the Committee.
APPENDIX II

List of the 82 States parties to the Convention on the means
of prohibiting and preventing the illicit import, export   
and transfer of ownership of cultural property

(Paris, 14 November 1970) as at 5 July 1995

Date of deposit
Ratification (R)
Acceptance (Ac)
Accession (A)Date of entry
StateSuccession (S)into force


Algeria  24 June 1974 (R)  24 September 1974
Angola   7 November 1991 (R)   7 February 1992
Argentina  11 January 1973 (R)  11 April 1973
Armenia 1/   5 September 1993 (S)     Note 1
Australia  30 October 1989 (Ac)  30 January 1990
Bangladesh   9 December 1987 (R)   9 March 1988
Belarus  28 April 1988 (R)  28 July 1988
Belize  26 January 1990 (R)  26 April 1990
Bolivia   4 October 1976 (R)   4 January 1977
Bosnia and Herzegovina 2/  12 July 1993 (S)     Note 2
Brazil  16 February 1973 (R)  16 May 1973
Bulgaria 7/  15 September 1971 (R)  24 April 1972
Burkina Faso   7 April 1987 (R)   7 July 1987
Cambodia  26 September 1972 (R)  26 December 1972
Cameroon  24 May 1972 (R)  24 August 1972
Canada  28 March 1978 (Ac)  28 June 1978
Central African Republic   1 February 1972 (R)   1 May 1972
China  28 November 1989 (Ac)  28 February 1990
Colombia  24 May 1988 (Ac)  24 August 1988
Cote d'Ivoire  30 October 1990 (R)  30 January 1991
Croatia 2/   6 July 1992 (S)     Note 2
Cuba  30 January 1980 (R)  30 April 1980
Cyprus  19 October 1979 (R)  19 January 1980
Czech Republic 3/  26 March 1993 (S)     Note 3
Democratic People's Republic
of Korea  13 May 1983 (R)  13 August 1983
Date of deposit
Ratification (R)
Acceptance (Ac)
Accession (A)Date of entry
StateSuccession (S)into force

Dominican Republic   7 March 1973 (R)   7 June 1973
Ecuador 7/  24 March 1971 (A)  24 April 1972
Egypt   5 April 1973 (Ac)   5 July 1973
El Salvador  20 February 1978 (R)  20 May 1978
Georgia 1/   4 November 1992 (S)     Note 1
Greece   5 June 1981 (R)   5 September 1981
Grenada  10 September 1992 (Ac)  10 December 1992
Guatemala  14 January 1985 (R)  14 April 1985
Guinea  18 March 1979 (R)  18 June 1979
Honduras  19 March 1979 (R)  19 June 1979
Hungary  23 October 1978 (R)  23 January 1979
India  24 January 1977 (R)  24 April 1977
Iran (Islamic Republic of)  27 January 1975 (Ac)  27 April 1975
Iraq  12 February 1973 (Ac)  12 May 1973
Italy   2 October 1978   2 January 1979
Jordan  15 March 1974 (R)  15 June 1974
Kuwait  22 June 1972 (Ac)  22 September 1972
Kyrgyzstan   3 July 1995 (A)   3 October 1995 6/
Lebanon  25 August 1992 (R)  25 November 1992
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya   9 January 1973 (R)   9 April 1973
Madagascar  21 June 1989 (R)  21 September 1989
Mali   6 April 1987 (R)   6 July 1987
Mauritania  27 April 1977 (R)  27 July 1977
Mauritius  27 February 1978 (Ac)  27 May 1978
Mexico   4 October 1972 (Ac)   4 January 1973
Mongolia  23 May 1991 (Ac)  23 August 1991
Nepal  23 June 1976 (R)  23 September 1976
Nicaragua  19 April 1977 (R)  19 July 1977
Niger  16 October 1972 (R)  16 January 1973
Date of deposit
Ratification (R)
Acceptance (Ac)
Accession (A)Date of entry
StateSuccession (S)into force


Nigeria  24 January 1972 (R)  24 April 1972
Oman   2 June 1978 (Ac)   2 September 1978
Pakistan  30 April 1981 (R)  30 July 1981
Panama  13 August 1973 (Ac)  13 November 1973
Peru  24 October 1979 (Ac)  24 January 1980
Poland  31 January 1974 (R)  30 April 1974
Portugal   9 December 1985 (R)   9 March 1986
Qatar  20 April 1977 (Ac)  20 July 1977
Republic of Korea  14 February 1983 (Ac)  14 May 1983
Romania   6 December 1993 (R)   6 March 1994
Russian Federation 5/  28 April 1988 (R)  28 July 1988
Saudi Arabia   8 September 1976 (Ac)   8 December 1976
Senegal   9 December 1984 (R)   9 March 1985
Slovakia 3/  31 March 1993 (S)     Note 3
Slovenia 2/   5 November 1992 (S)     Note 2
Spain  10 January 1986 (R)  10 April 1986
Sri Lanka   7 April 1981 (Ac)   7 July 1981
Syrian Arab Republic  21 February 1975 (Ac)  21 May 1975
Tajikistan 1/  28 August 1992 (S)     Note 1
Tunisia  10 March 1975 (R)  10 June 1975
Turkey  21 April 1981 (R)  21 July 1981
Ukraine  28 April 1988 (R)  28 July 1988
United Republic of Tanzania   2 August 1977 (R)   2 November 1977
United States of America   2 September 1983 (Ac)   2 December 1983
Uruguay   9 August 1977 (R)   9 November 1977
Yugoslavia (Serbia
  and Montenegro) 4/   3 October 1972 (R)   3 January 1973
Zaire  23 September 1974 (R)  23 December 1974
Zambia  21 June 1985 (R)  21 September 1985

Notes

  1/  This State lodged a notification of  succession at the mentioned date,
by which  it  stated that  it was  bound  by  the Convention  that the  USSR
ratified on 28 April 1988.

  2/  This State  lodged a notification of succession at the mentioned date,
by which  it stated  that it was  bound by the  Convention which  Yugoslavia
ratified on 3 October 1972.

  3/  This State lodged a notification of succession at the mentioned  date,
by which it stated that it was bound  by the Convention which Czechoslovakia
accepted on 14 February 1977.

  4/   The Federal Republic of  Yugoslavia (Serbia  and Montenegro) notified
the Director-General on 27  April 1992 that  it would strictly abide by  all
the  international  obligations which  the  Socialist  Federal  Republic  of
Yugoslavia had assumed in the past.

  5/   The instrument of ratification was deposited by the  USSR on 28 April
1988.   The Director-General has been  informed that  the Russian Federation
would continue the participation of the USSR in UNESCO conventions.

  6/  Date foreseen for entry into force.

  7/   In conformity with the  procedure set forth  in the Convention,  this
agreement  enters into force,  for the first States,  three months after the
deposit of ratification by the third State, Nigeria.


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