Inetrnational Centre of the Roerichs

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Resolution of international scientific-social conference

“80 years of Roerich pact”

8-11th of October 2015

International scientific-social conference «80 years of Roerich» pact was held under the patronage of UNESCO in Moscow in Museum named after Nicolas Roerich of International Centre of the Roerichs from 8th to 11th of October 2015.

International Centre of the Roerichs acted as an organizer of the conference. Co-organizers of the conference: Russian academy of natural sciences, Russian academy of cosmonautics n.a. Tsiolkovsky, Institute of natural science and engineering history n.a. Vavilov RAS, Russian philosophic community, Russian community of historical and cultural monuments protection, International association of World Funds, International League of culture protection, International committee of Roerichs heritage protection, Charity Fund n.a. H.I. Roerich. Informational center of United Nations Organization in Moscow provided support to conference. CHIN «Ottava» radio, «Culture and Time» journal, data portal «Museums of Russia» Acted as media partner of the conference.

422 Representatives from 20 countries participated in the conference: Austria, Armenia, Bulgaria, Germany, Spain, Kazakhstan, Canada, Columbia, Kirgizstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, Sudan, Finland, Estonia, Republic of Belarus, Uzbekistan, and Ukraine. There were 3 members of Academy of Science, 10 Doctors of Science, 35 Philosophy doctors, 6 and candidates for a degree.

Representatives of embassies of 9 foreign states Argentina, Bulgaria, Venezuela, Dominican republic, India, Columbia, Costa Rica, Cuba and Paraguay participated in opening ceremony: from Argentina, Bulgaria, Venezuela, Dominican republic, India, Columbia, Costa Rica, Cuba and Paraguay.

Addressed greetings to the participants of the conference: Mr. Huan Visente Paredes Torrealba – Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela; Mrs. Claudia Liliana Sambrano – charge d'affaires a.i. for Russian affairs of Republic of Colombia; Mr. Janesundar – media, information and culture secretary of India Embassy in RF; Leonardo Olasabal Amaral – president of «Darjeeling Agni Yoga» association; founder and director of private museum of piece n.a. N.K. Roerich in Bilbao (Spain); G.E. Ordzhonikidze – executive secretary of RF UNESCO committee; V.A. Cherneshev – chairman of the RF State Duma science and high technologies, academician of RAS and RAMS; V.V. Kondrashin – member of Council of the Federation Committee on Science, Education, Culture and Information Policy; L.V. Ivanickaya – senior vice-president, senior academic secretary of Russian Academy of Natural Sciences; V.A. Stavickii –vice-president of people’s Pushkin Fund, member of the federation council chairman’s committee of national cultural policy, S.V. Avdeev – pilot-cosmonaut of Russian Federation, Hero of Russian Federation, Knight of the Legion of Honor; A.A. Zolotov – vice-president of Russian Academy of Arts, academician of RAA; A.A. Migunov – candidate of historical sciences, vice-president of International social movement “East Dimension” conveyed greetings from M.E. Nikolaev, State Duma deputy, president of International social movement “East Dimension”; pilot-cosmonauts, Heroes of Russian Federation Oleg Kononenko, Michail Kornienko and Sergei Volkov – cosmonauts of 45/46th expedition to the International Space Station sent a greeting video message.

Conference received greetings from 55 representatives of cultural and scientific communities, politicians and social activists. Among them were: Irina Bokova – UNESCO Director General; doctor – Frank Gunter Zehnder – president of International academy of arts (Heimbach, Germany); Kuuskemma Uri – heritage asset protection adviser of mayor of Tallinn, Tallinn herald; doctor Barbel Shindler-Saevkou – Germany Piece Council Administration; professor Aleksandr Fedotov – president of the oriental languages and culture Center, president of the Korean studies Center in Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”, doctor of philology (Sofia, Bulgaria); A.M. Gnedovskii – executive director of Russian committee of International Museums Council (Russia ICOM); V.S. Stepin – president of Russian philosophical communtity, academician of RAS; I.V. Barmin – president of Russian academy of cosmonautics n.a. K.E. Tsiolkovsky, corresponding member of RAS; U.M. Baturin – director of natural science and engineering n.a. S.I. Vavilov, corresponding member of RAS; SH. R. Pidaev – director of Art studies Institute of Uzbekistan Academy of science, professor (Tashkent city); V.I. Nifad’ev – president of Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University, academician of Kyrgystan National academy of science, Doctor of Engineering Science, professor, honored scientist; V.M. Ploskih – head of history and culturology department in Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University, Doctor of historical sciences, professor, honored scientist, academician, head of Source studies and manmade heritage department NAN Kyrgystan; V.A. Voropaeva – professor of Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University; Chairman of Tien Shan Roerich community, knight of D.A. Kutmanaliev humanitarian pedagogics, S.A. Ogay – president of Maritime State University n.a. admiral G.I. Nevelskii (Vladivostok), A.A. Hamatova – acting director of Far Eastern Federal University, professor (Vladivostok), A.P. Falaleev – vice-principal of Sevastopol national technical university, doctor of engineering, professor; Birte Brugmann – president of German cultural property protection community, Slava Ivanova – director of National gallery (Sofia, Bulgaria); representatives of other non-governmental, scientific and cultural institutions.

Exhibition of ICR international cultural and educational project «Roerich pact. History and modernity» was opened in Roerich museum during the conference.

The provisions of the international «Treaty on the Protection of Artistic and Scientific Institutions and Historic Monuments» signed on 15 April 1935 are of a particular relevance in a year of the 80th anniversary anniversary of the document. Destruction of world cultural values in the wake of the armed conflicts and in times of piece became global. Numerous destructions of invaluable ancient culture monuments in Middle East and North Africa countries raise deep concerns. Irretrievable loss of cultural heritage sites impoverishes future generations’ lives, leads to the loss of energetics of beauty; deprive countries and nations of millennial accumulation of cultural memory.

At the present day, the state policy on preservation of cultural heritage in Russia is ineffective. The record shows that about 80% of monuments protected by the state is in poor condition. According to the Russian Ministry of Cultural Affairs, by 2012 the loss of cultural heritage amounts to 150-200 monuments per year.

Treaty on the protection of world cultural heritage proposed in the first part of 20th century by Russian scientist, painter and philosopher N.K. Roerich is based on the concept that Culture is the basis of human being and driving force of humanity’s cosmic evolution. Up to now, this fundamental idea of culture importance is not fully realized.

Roerich Pact, which is still an applicable treaty, became the basis of the entire international cultural values protection legal system. The most important principles and rules of Roerich Pact were taken as a basis of the Hague Convention on the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict (1954), Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and National Heritage(1972) and other legal acts of UNESCO. The point to be emphasized is that Roerich Pact has a huge potential for the future progressive development and codification of international cultural values protection law.

Banner of peace is a distinguishing flag of Roerich Pact, it is dedicated to protect historical monuments, museums, libraries, scientific, artistic and educational institutions and its personnel, without distinction of their political views, ethnic differences and confessions. The Banner with white background has a circumference – symbol of eternity and three united amaranth spheres in it – symbols of the past, present and future continuation of cultural accumulations.

Preservation of Culture as a basis of humanity’s evolution and consolidation of Nicholas Konstantinovich Roerich’s the most important «Piece through the Culture» idea is an evolutionary objective of Roerich pact.

The Pact initiator has given the main role of culture protection to the society. N.K. Roerich pointed out: «the genuine culture is growing in the human consciousness, not by the governmental directives». The signing of Roerich Pact became possible after N.K. Roerich initiated an international public movement. That is a convincing example of public institutions’ crucial role in Culture consolidation. Thus, a potential of public form Culture development was proved.

N.K. Roerich considered Pact not merely as a legal act, but also as an important document of a huge educational value. He believed that it is extremely important to raise a younger generation cultivating the respect to cultural treasures of its nation and other nations of the world.

Nowadays evolutionary ideas of Roerich Pact were given a renewed momentum for their consolidation through the persistent efforts of International Centre of the Roerichs (ICR) – non-governmental organization founded by N.K. Roerich’s younger son Svetoslav Nikolaevich Roerich.

For more than 25 years since its foundation, International Centre of the Roerichs popularizes the ideas of Roerich Pact and Banner of Piece, asserting lofty principles and evolutionary importance of Culture and Beauty under the guidance of L.V. Shaposhnikova – academician, all-time general director of Museum n.a. Nicholas Roerich, Honored Artist of Russia

International cultural and educational exhibition project called “Roerich Pact. History and Modernity”, which was launched in UNESCO headquarters in Paris in 2012 became the largest public initiative in ICR activity.

ICR organized and conducted exhibitions in 98 cities of Central Russia, Ural region, Siberia, Far East region, Crimea and South of Russia; 38 exhibitions in 36 cities of 14 countries in Europe, Asia, Latin America and USA.

Exhibitions were held in UNESCO headquarters in Paris, in Senat and Legislative Assembly of Argentina, the UN Office in Geneva, at the Peace Palace in Hague. In April 2015, the exhibition was opened in the building of the UN General Assembly in New York. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova highly appreciated the activities of the International Centre of the Roerichs.

Despite high international prestige, wider peacekeeping, cultural and educational activities of the ICR and its public Museum n.a. N.K. Roerich, the leadership of the Russian Ministry of Cultural Affairs does not stop trying to destroy this unique non-governmental organization. The purpose of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs is a transfer of the Roerichs ' heritage in state ownership, against the will of S.N. Roerich, who transferred the heritage exclusively to the International Centre of the Roerichs for creating a public Museum. The Ministry brings endless proceedings against the ICR, spurious criminal cases and checking of the Prosecutor's office and the Ministry of internal affairs, deliberately creates a negative image of the ICR by spreading distorted information in the media and on the Internet.

This happens despite the protests of tens of thousands of Russian and international public representatives, requiring to preserve the Museum in accordance with the will of S.N. Roerich. The Museum, created solely by the ICR, patrons and public donations, in accordance with the Roerich Pact, is a subject of absolute protection.

The International Centre of the Roerichs is the world's leading cultural, educational and scientific organization for the study, preservation and popularization of the Roerichs' heritage. The international scientific and public conference "80 years of the Roerich Pact" is the evidence of this.

The reports presented at the conference reflected the wide range of issues concerning the relevance of the Roerich Pact in the modern world, the leading role of Culture in the sustainable development of modern civilization, the need for effective world cultural heritage protection, the evolutionary significance of the activities of Nicholas Roerich and Helena Ivanovna Roerich to assert the priority of Culture in society and human life. Issues of evolutionary, historical and legal aspects of the Roerich Pact, the critical role of public forms of culture as the Foundation for the preservation of the Russian cultural heritage were also covered. The reports referred to the need of understanding Culture from the standpoint of the new cosmic thinking, the disclosure of evolutionary importance, historical and cultural singularity of the banner of Peace, coordination of efforts on the protection of national cultural heritage. The conference culminated with the round table "the Roerich Pact and the protection of International Centre-Museum n.a. N.K. Roerich".

The conference decree:

1. To express thanks and appreciation to UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova for providing UNESCO patronage to ICR conference «80 years of the Roerich Pact».

2. To acknowledge the outstanding achievements of the Nicholas Roerich Museum director, Honored Artist of Russia, academician L.V. Shaposhnikova in preservation, study, popularization, protection of Roerichs’ heritage and approval of peacekeeping ideas of Roerich Pact in Russia and abroad.

3. To support the decision of the ICR Management Board on the formation of a committee on elaboration of proposals intended to perpetuate the memory of L.V. Shaposhnikova.

4. To express thanks and appreciation to ICR for its persistent activity on popularization of Roerich Pact and its humanistic ideas.

5. To continue cultural and educational activity of ICR, Roerich communities and other cultural and educational organizations on advancement and popularization of Roerich Pact in the world.

6. Come up with a proposal to the Russian Government to support ICR activity in every possible way, specifically, support ICR international exhibition projects “Roerich Pact. History and modernity” and “Roerich Pact – piece through culture”, considering that ICR peacekeeping efforts are extremely popular in the modern world.

7. ICR Museum n.a. Roerich should get protection in time of piece provided by Roerich Pact, which means maintenance of its legal status of public museum, as well as creation of conditions for the continuation and development of its activity, established by outstanding scientist and cultural professional L.V. Shaposhnikova.

8. To consider the Ministry of Cultural Affairs actions aimed at the seizure of Roerichs’ heritage transferred to ICR by S.N. Roerich, as a violation of the S.N. Roerich will, who was an owner of this property. This exemption leads to the destruction of the ICR Public Museum n.a. Roerich, which is strenuously unacceptable.

9. To recognize the the ICR Museum n.a. Roerich as a focus of the social movement in protection of culture based on the ideas of the Roerich Pact. The destruction of a unique Museum will cause irreparable damage to this public movement.

10. To write an open letter to Moscow mayor Sergei Sobyanin from the participants of the conference with the request to support the public Museum n.a. Roerich and not to transfer the lopukhins’ estate to the Federal property.

11. To recognize the ICR public Museum n.a. Roerich as a unique place of national and world cultural heritage that deserves the full support of the Russian Federation Government and society.

12. On behalf of the participants to Express indignation and protest against the deliberate destruction of cultural monuments in Syria and other countries of the Middle East, North Africa and Europe and to encourage international cultural community to unite in order to effectively counter this damage and to support the efforts of UNESCO towards the preservation of world cultural heritage.

13. To propose to the Government of the Russian Federation to consider accession to this “Roerich Pact” given that, currently, only the Roerich Pact provides absolute protection on historical monuments, museums, scientific, artistic, educational and cultural institutions and their personnel during the armed conflicts and in the time of piece and the fact that North and South America states, including U.S.A are the parties to the Roerich Pact, which they ratified immediately after it was signed in 1935. The accession of Russia to this international treaty will contribute to not only the protection and development of national cultural heritage but will also strengthen the prestige of Russia as a major peacekeeping and cultural Power, will substantially raise the existing level of international cultural property protection and will set an example to many countries of Asia, Africa and Europe.

14. To address a proposal to the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation to consider the inclusion of sections dedicated to the world cultural heritage preservation and the Roerich Pact peacekeeping ideas in the academic programs of the schools and universities, in order to implement the main directions of state educational and cultural policies.

15. To recommend participants to widely spread the conference materials among the scientists, teachers, workers of cultural sphere and all interested public members.