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Promotion of the book “World Heritage of Serbia” in Leposavić

18. April 2010 - 19:58
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Today UNESCO’s World Heritage Day was marked in Leposavić. As part of the program “Serbia in Serbia and Serbia in the world” an exhibition and the promotion of the book “Svetska baština - Srbija” (World Heritage of Serbia) organized by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Serbia and the Republic Institute for the Protection of Cultural Monuments was held in the Sava Dečanac Cultural Center.

The exhibition was opened by the Minister of Culture of Serbia, Mr. Nebojsa Bradić, while speakers at the promotion of the book included Gojko Milivojević, director of the Cultural Center; Vera Pavlović Lončarski, director of the Republic Institute for the Protection of Cultural Monuments of Serbia; and Marko Popović, president of the Commission in the area of protection of cultural properties of great importance and properties of Serbian origin abroad.

Representing the Serbian Orthodox Church and the Diocese of Raška-Prizren, on whose territory valuable monuments-holy shrines included on the UNESCO World Heritage List are located, this important cultural event was attended by His Grace Vicar Bishop Teodosije, who then made a statement for the media emphasizing that cultural-historical monuments and holy shrines of our Church should be seen primarily as living and liturgical communities, and that as such they have survived for centuries and remain to this day as witnesses to the faith of our people, its ethos and Christian culture.

Minister Bradić said that the monograph has already been published in English, German and Chinese and that translations are being prepared in French, Russian, Italian and other languages. The monograph has been presented in Leipzig, Beijing and Shanghai, said Bradić, stressing that Serbia has other cultural monuments that deserve the attention of the world public, such as the Smederevo Fortress, which was built at the same time as the famous Forbidden City in Beijing.

The chairman of the Commission for monuments of great importance Marko Popović pointed out the uniqueness of each of the monuments in Kosovo and Metohija, which deserve to be included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. He also cited further steps for their preservation, noting that some, like the church of Bogorodica Ljeviška (the Holy Virgin of Lyevish), have been destroyed and rebuilt several times over the centuries. So it will be once again after the latest pogrom, said Popović, adding that above all, we must ensure that our heritage in Kosovo and Metohija serves its purpose - the preservation of spirituality.

The director of the Republic Institute for the Protection of Monuments Vera Pavlović-Lončarski pointed out that we have to make an effort to ensure that our monuments in Kosovo and Metohija, which are presently on the endangered list, are removed from that list. The guests were greeted by the director of the Leposavić Cultural Center, Gojko Milivojević, who spoke about the importance of preserving our heritage for future generations.

Included on the World Heritage List are Studenica (from 1986), Stari Ras and Sopoćani (from 1979), four monuments in Kosovo and Metohija: Visoki Dečani Monastery, added in 2004, to which have been added in 2006 on the endangered list the monastery of the Peć Patriarchate, Gračanica Monastery and the church of Bogorodica Ljeviška.

Gamzigrad-Romuliana is our only archaeological site on the UNESCO list and was added in 2007. The World Heritage List includes 890 sites of cultural and natural beauty. After the presentation of the monograph and the opening of the exhibition, the Kolo National Ensemble gave a short concert, performing songs from Kosovo and Metohija.

The delegation of the Ministry of Culture of Serbia headed by Deputy Minister Dušica Živković and director of the Republic Institute Vera Pavlović Lončarski visited the monastery of the Peć Patriarchate and Visoki Dečani Monastery today, where Vicar Bishop Teodosije and his brotherhood welcomed them.

The monograph “World Heritage Site of Serbia” is the first professional presentation of cultural monuments on the UNESCO list, which are located on the territory of Serbia.

Included on the World Heritage List are Studenica Monastery (1986), Stari Ras and Sopoćani, a complex that includes the church of Sts. Peter and Paul in Stari Ras and Đurđevi Stupovi (Pillars of St. George) Monastery near Novi Pazar (1979) and four monuments and holy shrines in Kosovo and Metohija registered under the common name of Medieval Monuments in Kosovo: Visoki Dečani Monastery (first added in 2004), the monastery of the Peć Patriarchate and Gračanica Monastery, and the church of Bogorodica Ljeviška in Prizren (2006). The Ministry of Culture recalls that the monuments in Kosovo and Metohija registered in 2006 have been placed on the endangered list of World Heritage Sites, a clear warning of the need for special protection measures.

In addition to medieval Christian monuments and holy shrines, pre-Christian monuments such as Gamzigrad-Romuliana and the Palace of the Roman Emperor Galerius, the only archaeological site in Serbia on the World Heritage List (2007) are also important. Romuliana is a unique complex consisting of a late antique palace and its accessory buildings, and the site is one of the most significant complexes from the late Roman period in Europe.

The UNESCO World Heritage List includes 890 sites of cultural and natural richness, evaluated by the World Heritage Committee as sites of exceptional universal value.

The World Heritage List includes 689 cultural, 176 natural and 25 mixed sites that are located in a total of 186 countries. Since April 2009 all 186 countries have ratified the Convention on World Heritage.