Posts tagged ‘Mali’


Antiquities looting and the human rights of subsistence diggers

I’ve finally published something on the Human Rights of Subsistence Diggers. I cannot thank the editors of Ethics and the Archaeology of Violence, Alfredo González-Ruibal and Gabriel Moshenska, enough.

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Should cultural monuments become an active issue of the human rights agenda?

Director of the Djulfa Virtual Memorial and Museum, Producer of the New Tears of Araxes and South Caucasus Specialist for Amnesty International, Simon Maghakyan has asked, ‘when does targeting monuments become a human rights abuse [or a crime against humanity]?’ ‘Should cultural monuments become an active issue of the human rights agenda?’

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@conflictantiq Twitter archive and Conflict Antiquities’ plan for news sharing

First of all, I want to apologise to subscribers for the @samarkeolog tweet archive “spam”. I turned off every notification I could, precisely in order to save (Twitter) followers and (Facebook) community members from hearing about the (real but uninteresting) posts, but I couldn’t stop e-mails to subscribers.

Second, I’m in the process of redeveloping my blog, which I will explain in deeply dull detail in the following post. Briefly, I’m revising my blog (and @conflictantiq Twitter feed) to try to document looting and destruction of cultural property in crises and conflicts as-it-happens. I’d be grateful for any comments (about the subject, the presentation, the delivery…); I’m keen to make my material as useful as possible.

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@samarkeolog Twitter archive: illicit antiquities trade in West Africa – Mali and Nigeria

Partly to help me (publicly) archive material from before my @conflictantiq Twitter feed on looting and destruction of cultural and community property, partly to help me clarify (for myself) what I want to document on it, I’ve copied-and-pasted(-and-hyperlinked) the (immediately or otherwise) relevant material from my @samarkeolog Twitter feed (primarily on professional, Balkan and Mediterranean matters).

It was a huge time sink; but I am utterly dedicated to uneconomic(al) activity.

@samarkeolog tweets on the illicit antiquities trade in West Africa – Mali and Nigeria – are here.

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Mali: no evidence of mass looting, but only because of refugee crisis and extremists’ commitment to destruction

Despite a multidimensional crisis that has created ideal conditions for the trade in conflict antiquities from Mali, there appears to be no evidence of organised criminal, or religious or nationalist paramilitary, antiquities looting.

Unfortunately, the lack of looting may actually indicate that the humanitarian crisis is too severe to be exploited by the illicit antiquities market: the most desperate communities have become refugees unable to engage in subsistence digging; and the religious extremist paramilitaries do not need or want to profit from the smuggling and sale of cultural property, as their sole interest is in its destruction.

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looting, the subsistence digging economy in Mali; and stemming the flow of looted antiquities from Mali to the USA

I’d been planning on blogging about looting in Mali later, but Donna Yates asked if I was going to comment on the U.S. State Department’s Cultural Property Advisory Committee’s call for comments on its Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Mali. So, here is a summary of the looting crisis in Mali, and the role of the antiquities market in the U.S. (and elsewhere); here is my comment on the USA-Mali MOU.

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