Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania Resolution on the Accession of Lithuania to the Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (Faro Convention)


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SEIMAS OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
 
 
RESOLUTION
ON THE ACCESSION OF lITHUANIA TO THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE FRAMEWORK CONVENTION ON THE VALUE OF
CULTURAL HERITAGE FOR SOCIETY (fARO CONVENTION)
 
14 November 2017   No XIII-725
Vilnius
 
 
 
 
The Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania,
stressing that the Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (the so-called Faro Convention) which recognises that rights relating to cultural heritage are inherent in the right to participate in cultural life, as defined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, is particularly relevant for Lithuania due to the fact that public participation in the taking of decisions which determine the fate of even the most important cultural property is not adequately ensured in our country (for example, the simplified publicity procedure was applied when preparing territorial planning documents of the ensemble of Vilnius Monastery of Missionaries and the Church of the Ascension of the Lord);
reminding that members of the Forum ‘Heritage and Society’, held at the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania ten years ago on 18 May 2007, who were representatives of non-governmental organizations (the Commission on Alternative Cultural Heritage, the Society of Art Historians of Lithuania, the Society of the Lithuanian Archaeology, the Union of Lithuanian Architects and other organizations), the Seimas and executive authorities (the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania, the Department of Cultural Heritage under the Ministry of Culture, the Cultural Heritage Centre) adopted the Resolution on the State and Prospects of Lithuanian Cultural Heritage proposing to the Seimas and the President of the Republic ‘to accelerate the accession of the Republic of Lithuania to the Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society’;
also reminding that participants of the Conference of the Council of Europe ‘International Heritage Conventions and other Major Texts. Current Situation and Prospects’, held ten years ago in Vilnius on 11-12 October 2007, who were scientists, heads and other high-level representatives of the parliaments and executive authorities of more than 20 European states as well as the Council of Europe and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, UNESCO, the most influential European non-governmental organization ‘Europa Nostra’, with a combined membership of millions of members from more than 40 states, concerned with preservation of cultural heritage, the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS),  the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) and the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT)  adopted the Vilnius Declaration calling on the governments of the states to sign and ratify the Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society as soon as possible and, in the meantime, to start applying its principles changing, accordingly, their policies and practices in the field of cultural heritage;
regretting and assuming partial responsibility for the fact that within ten years from the joint appeal by the Lithuanian public and authorities and adoption in 2007 of the Vilnius declaration at the Council of Europe Conference the Lithuanian authorities have failed to adopt any decisions ensuring our country’s accession to the Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society;
noting that over the last decade concern over the Lithuanian politicians’ lax attitude towards the Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society has been publicly expressed on numerous occasions by the State Commission for Cultural Heritage Protection, which is an expert and advisory body to the Seimas, the President of the Republic and the Government of the Republic of Lithuania on the issues of state cultural heritage protection policy and its implementation, also that the current chair of the  Commission Evelina Karalevičienė has reiterated her hope that Lithuania will, however, accede to the Convention and become a fellow forward-thinking, modern democratic state, following the example of the neighbouring Latvia that signed and ratified this Convention shortly after its adoption,
urges the Government of the Republic of Lithuania to ensure that the Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society is signed as soon as possible and submitted to the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania for ratification and to immediately start applying its principles in Lithuania’s cultural heritage protection policy and in practice.
 
 
 
Speaker of the Seimas                                                                                        Viktoras Pranckietis