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Riyadh professionals forum empowers youth in heritage preservation


The works of the Extended 45th session of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee begin in Saudi Arabia on 10 of September. It includes events and forums, starting with the World Heritage Young Professionals Forum launch.

The Kingdom was appointed as the committee chair in recognition of its outstanding preservation efforts for world heritage, supported by King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, minister of culture and chairman of the Saudi National Committee for Education, Culture and Science.

The first session of the World Heritage Young Professionals Forum took place on Sunday. Its objective is to empower youth in the preservation of world heritage, by enhancing their skills and nurturing their talent.

The World Heritage Managers’ Forum, starting next Sunday, will provide a platform for managers to share proposals and perspectives on heritage preservation. The forum will address challenges and continue until Sept. 25.

UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee specializes in making decisions about adding suggested sites to the World Heritage List, assessing the conditions at the sites, and receiving reports and suggestions from the managers of the World Heritage sites.

The extended 45th session of the World Heritage Committee will take place from Sept. 10-25 in Riyadh. Princess Haifa Al-Mogrin, Saudi Arabia’s permanent representative to UNESCO, will chair the committee.


During this session, the committee will review proposals to add 50 new sites to the World Heritage List. These proposals consist of 37 cultural sites, 12 natural sites, and two sites of other forms of significance. Additionally, the committee will discuss potential boundary modifications for five existing heritage sites.

The World Heritage List currently includes 1,157 heritage sites in 167 countries. These sites range from natural wonders like forests and oases to human-made treasures such as culturally significant villages and palaces. Some sites even combine elements of both natural and cultural significance.

Saudi Arabia is home to six registered World Heritage Sites, and during the session, participants will have the opportunity to visit three of them. These include the At-Turaif District in Diriyah, the Al-Ahsa Oasis located in the eastern part of Saudi Arabia, and the Al-Hijr site in AlUla.

The World Heritage Committee was established after UNESCO’s member states signed the World Heritage Convention to establish frameworks and coordinate international efforts to preserve world heritage. The committee includes representatives from 21 out of the 194 countries that have ratified the World Heritage Convention.

All participants as well as the general public can follow the daily working sessions throughout the duration of the extended 45th session via the livestream.



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