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First aid to cultural heritage in Ukraine, Phase II
Implementation period: October 2022 - March 2023.Donor: Cultural Emergency Response, (CER) in cooperation with the Smithsonian Cultural Rescue Initiative (SCRI)Budget: 100,000 USDPerformer: Heritage Emergency Response Initiative (HERI)Administration: Tustan NGO
Kharkiv Region is among the regions most affected by Russian military aggression since the beginning of the full-scale military invasion. So as soon as the Ukrainian troops pushed back the invaders and de-occupied the Kharkiv region, HERI and Tustan NGO started expeditions to document the loss of cultural heritage.
The situation in the region will continue to be difficult. Even after the liberation of the territories, it is impossible to get to some sights - due to the proximity to the border, the high probability of shelling, the lack of a reliable road or other security obstacles. Nevertheless, as of October 2022, our local team has verified 326 and documented more than 52 monuments in Kharkiv and the Kharkiv region. Now the stage of entering and clarifying data in the information system is underway. The final list will be formed after data verification.
According to the results of the work of experts directly at the locations of destroyed and damaged objects, valuable primary information about the nature of damage and the level of damage was collected in the form of ground photos, drone photography, analytical expert conclusions and eyewitness testimonies. As with the results of the work of expedition teams in other regions, thanks to the efforts of Kharkiv colleagues, we continue to fill the information system of cultural heritage monitoring. Such an information base will help to more systematically and comprehensively plan further steps to restore monuments, as well as defend the interests of Ukraine at the International Criminal Court, because crimes against culture are classified as violations of international humanitarian law.
Detailed documentation results are available to individuals and institutions involved in the restoration of monuments and have a justified professional need to use them. For a wider circle, the survey results of the expeditions are available on the platform www.heritage.in.ua.
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