Fight against Illicit Trafficking of Cultural Property and Estonia

To address the increasing number of thefts in museums and at archaeological sites at the end of the 1960s and in the beginning of the 1970s as well as the illicit trafficking of cultural property, the Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property was created in 1970.

In more recent conflicts the world has seen deliberate destruction of cultural heritage as well as unprecedented trafficking of antiquities and cultural goods. Cultural heritage has been a specific target of war, used as a tactic of violence, to tear at the fabric of society.

Estonia has co-signed relevant resolutions in UNESCO Executive Board that strongly condemn the continuing attacks against the cultural heritage of Syria, Iraq and elsewhere and contribute to a new recognition of the importance of heritage protection for peace and security.

Estonia ratified the Convention in 1995. The contact point in Estonia on the fight against illicit trafficking of cultural property is Ms Linda Lainvoo from the National Board of Antiquities (linda.lainvoo @muinas.ee)