KOSOVO – OSCE mission calls for enhanced protection of religious heritage

The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) presented a new report on 9 April 2014 based on four year’s research in Kosovo. It concludes that the legal framework on the protection of cultural and religious heritage fails to clearly define institutional responsibilities in this regard. The report calls for improvement in the legislation and urges central and local governments to improve improve their co-operation, develop a comprehensive inventory list of the cultural heritage sites and include them in the spatial plans. While noting positive developments such as the creation of a special Kosovo Police unit tasked with protecting cultural heritage, it also urges an  increase in the frequency of site inspections, measures to prevent vandalism and illegal construction around those sites.

“Cultural heritage (…) preserves essential elements of our identities. It defines each and every community and each and every one of us, and that is why it must be protected,” said Ambassador Jean-Claude Schlumberger, Head of the OSCE Mission in Kosovo.

Read the full report here.