Today, I handed over the initial copy of the file to include the antiquities of Ma’rib in the UNESCO World Heritage List, to join its sisters: Sana’a, Shibam, Hadhramaut, Zabid and Socotra, on the same list.
The file was received by Mr. Alessandro Belsamo, Chairman of the Nominations Committee at the World Heritage Center at the headquarters of the International Organization in the French capital, Paris.
During a whole year, the file preparation team carried out continuous work to meet the deadline for submitting the initial version, which will be subject to observations by the organization’s nomination committee, before the final presentation takes place next January for the final version to be examined by an advisory committee that takes the necessary recommendations to qualify the Ma’rib monuments for the World Heritage List.
A great and wonderful effort made by the team in preparing historical data, maps, pictures, drawings, and management and protection plans. The team also carried out a field visit during which it collected important data on the field reality of archaeological sites, and uploaded a number of maps, pictures, drawings and determinants of the spatial framework for each site.
Submitting the file to UNESCO is an important step towards protecting and preserving the antiquities of the Kingdom of Sheba, and accrediting it as a World Heritage Site, but we still have a great deal of work to receive and work on UNESCO’s comments, in addition to the necessary diplomatic communication efforts within the organization’s corridors during the coming period.
It should be noted here the efforts of the urgent authority, led by Brother Sultan Al-Arada, the governor of Ma’rib Governorate, who paid great attention to the project despite the preoccupations of the war.
As well as the efforts of the brothers in the Ministry of Culture, Information and Tourism and Minister Muammar Al-Eryani.
I thank the former Minister of Culture, Mr. Marwan Dammaj, under whose supervision we started on the file.
As for the team preparing the file, it is their continuous work that brought the file to the doorstep of UNESCO today, thanks to the brothers:
Dr: Ali Mubarak Saleh Tuaman, Team Leader
And Dr. Hussein Al-Aidarous, a member of the team
And Dr. Muhammad bin Ali Al-Hajj is a member of the team
And Professor Sadiq Al-Silwi, Director of the Antiquities Office in Marib – a member of the team
Professor Rafik Al-Akouri is a member of the team.
Thanks are due to the international experts, Dr. Alaa Al-Habashi, Professor of Architecture and Heritage Preservation and Head of the Department of Architecture at Menoufia University, and to Dr. Iris Gerlach and researcher Marilyn Koster from the German Institute for Archaeological Studies.
And special thanks to the Arab Regional Center for World Heritage in the sisterly Kingdom of Bahrain, as well as the UNESCO office in the Gulf States and Yemen for cooperating in the framework of training and advisory services.
Thanks to Samaher Al-Hadry, who contributed to the translation work.
Thanks be to God first and foremost.