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Action Needed To Save Age-Old African Rock Art

Urgent Action Needed To Save Age-Old African Rock Art, Annan Says

With African rock art providing one of the oldest and most extensive records on Earth of human thought, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has called on the continent’s leaders to play a more active role in saving a priceless cultural heritage of all humankind that is under severe threat, above all from neglect and thieves.

“It shows the very emergence of the human imagination. It is a priceless treasure. And it is irreplaceable,” he said in a video message to the Trust for African Rock Art (TARA), a non-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) dedicated to the conservation of Africa’s rock art heritage.

“Yet, today, Africa’s rock art is severely threatened. Its future is uncertain. Perhaps the greatest threat is neglect. A lack of resources, combined with a lack of official interest, has left too many rock art sites unguarded against vandals and thieves,” he added.

“We must save this cultural heritage before it is too late,” he declared, calling on Africa’s leaders to take a new and more active role and on private businesses, foundations and individuals to contribute their expertise and resources.

“We at the United Nations will continue to do our part.”

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