What is happening in Ukraine breaks our hearts. Ukraine and Slovakia were the initiators of our joint UNESCO World Heritage "Ancient Beech Forests and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe" in 2007, which has since been extended several times.
The World Heritage Beech Forests now includes 94 valuable forest areas in 18 States Parties. Without Ukraine, there would perhaps be no UNESCO World Heritage Beech Forests. From the very beginning, there has been very good cooperation with Ukraine and all other nations. Just like the ancient forests that need to be connected to maintain the resilience of the ecosystems, we need to unite as the European Beech Forest Family. We are concerned for our colleagues and the entire population of Ukraine. Our thoughts are with them in these dark days.
We welcome and support the following press statement from the UNESCO National Commissions:
The recent events represent a turning point for Ukraine, Europe and the whole world. The UNESCO National Commissions of Europe (and beyond) strongly condemn the Russian Federation's attack on Ukraine. We express our solidarity with the Ukrainian people, including journalists covering the conflict zone, as well as teachers, educators, students and pupils who have the right to be educated in peace. We fully support our partners who are committed to UNESCO's goals and values in Ukraine and beyond.
On February 24, 2022, UNESCO called for respect for international humanitarian law. In particular, it called for respect for freedom of information, protection of media professionals, and compliance with the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict. A total of seven UNESCO World Heritage sites are located in Ukraine. Following the recent escalation of violence, UN Secretary-General António Guterres has called on the Russian president to withdraw his troops from Ukraine.
(Übersetzt mit www.DeepL.com/Translator)