Assyrians to Embrace SAFE to Preserve Ancient Heritage

3/28/2009 12:22:00 AM

As the rightful heirs of the Assyrian heritage, every Assyrian organization, cultural center, church, school, and individual has an obligation to support the annual Global Candlelight Vigil project initiated by Dr. Donny George, the former director of the Baghdad Museum and sponsored by SAFE (Saving Antiquities for Everyone) held April 10-12 of each year.

Six years after the world witnessed in horror as the Iraq Museum in Baghdad was looted and many priceless antiquities were destroyed or stolen, SAFE continues to bring awareness to this tragedy to cultural heritage of mankind by its annual Candlelight Vigil. Although, many of the stolen objects have been recovered and returned to Baghdad Museum, there are still thousands of other pieces missing and often sold in the auctions and black markets around the world.

Iraqi Museum reopened seven of its galleries in February of this year, displaying many of the recovered items as well as newly discovered artifacts, while the plundering of thousands of archaeological sites continues.

SAFE annual Candlelight Vigil in commemoration of the tragic looting and to acknowledge that we are all responsible for the protection of our shared cultural awareness has been instrumental to raise the global awareness regarding this matter, discovery of some looted items, increase of security measures in the museums, and watchful eyes over the antiquity auctions and dealers globally.

All you have to do to support this project is to host or participate in a SAFE Candlelight Vigil on April 10, 11, or 12 of each year until every piece of stolen antiquity is returned to Baghdad Museum.

SAFE website has a world of information regarding this project, as well as simple step-by-step instruction to host a vigil, and announcement of the local candlelight vigils already organized in your area which you can participate in. Thus, if you plan to host a vigil, make sure you send the information to SAFE to display your announcement on their website.

For more information regarding this worthy project, please see SAFE website at: savingantiquities.org/candlelightvigils.php