UNESCO trains Europeans to prevent trafficking of looted Ukrainian art
The United Nations cultural organization is training law enforcement and judiciary officials from countries on Ukraine’s western borders, seeking to prevent the trafficking of looted cultural objects from Ukraine amid Russia’s war against its neighbor.
UNESCO partnered with Poland’s Culture Ministry to hold three days of workshops in Warsaw this week for officials from Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and Moldova. Representatives from Ukraine also attended the training. The purpose of such training is to identify and prevent the export of any artistic property looted in Ukraine. Another priority for the agency is to make sure that the wider public is aware that looted Ukrainian treasures could end up on European art markets so that buyers are more careful about what they buy.
According to UNESCO’s Director of Culture and Emergencies, Krista Piccat, over 230 cultural sites have been damaged or destroyed in Ukraine since Russia invaded the country. She added that the organization is working on documenting the lost cultural objects, including museum collections and archaeological sites.