Press Statement Attributable to
the Spokesperson for the High Representative for
the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC)
on religious sites in Ukraine
New York – 6 June 2022
The High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), Mr. Miguel Ángel Moratinos, conveys his deep concern and condemnation for the damage inflicted upon religious sites as a result of the war in Ukraine.
The High Representative recalls that as of 30 May 2022, in line with the relevant provisions of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, and within its mandate, UNESCO has verified damage to 62 religious sites in the country.
The High Representative reiterates the fundamental human right enshrined in article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to manifest one’s religion in worship. The respect of religious sites is even more crucial in times of crisis and they should be consistently preserved under all circumstances.
He recalls the UN Plan of Action to Safeguard Religious Sites, developed by UNAOC, and calls on all governments and relevant stakeholders to support its implementation. He also invites the global youth and faith communities to join UNAOC’s global call to action #forSafeWorship to contribute to celebrate the universality of religious sites as symbols of our shared humanity, history, and traditions.