Delegates: Ms. Parenti, Mr. Mostratisi
44. Ms. Parenti (Italy), speaking as a youth delegate, said that cultural heritage enabled young people to connect with the future and the past simultaneously, and could create a new framework in which the younger generation were protagonists in the struggle to find climate change solutions and to achieve peace, security and economic growth. Cultural heritage was varied, ranging from concrete monuments to intangible traditions. In the context of globalization and its ensuing tensions, a deep connection to cultural heritage was essential for building a fairer future, with young people as leaders. Italy had traditionally advocated the use of cultural heritage as a tool for peace and development. It had placed culture at the centre of the peace and security agenda by promoting, along with France, Security Council resolution 2347 (2017), which addressed the destruction and trafficking of cultural heritage in armed conflict. Italy had also been the first country to have gendarmerie units that specialized in protecting cultural heritage. As the organizer of the first-ever Group of 7 meeting on culture, held in Florence in 2017, Italy had proudly reaffirmed its unyielding commitment to the protection of cultural heritage, which was a driver of cooperation, sustainability and peace.
45. Mr. Mostratisi (Italy), speaking as a youth delegate, said that youth could be a vector in promoting a culture of peace and non-violent dialogue. In the Italian city of Rondine, young people from all over the world had taken part in a programme designed to foster understanding among the younger generation and enable young people to overcome prejudices through the mutual study of cultures. Cultural differences, in the broadest terms, could be a source of conflict, but when young people focused on mutual understanding through the study of cultural heritage, they were empowered to prevent conflicts and take on a key role in building and consolidating peace. The role of youth in the conservation of cultural landscapes and in safeguarding traditional knowledge, values and practices would enhance the resilience of communities to disasters and climate change.
46. In the globalized era, it was vital to discuss cultural heritage. Close examination of monuments and buildings revealed them to be tangible witnesses to the fact that groups in conflict either shared common roots or had coexisted peacefully in the past. A dynamic quest for heritage preservation characterized by youth exchanges could pave the way towards a world where prejudices and discrimination would be greatly diminished. Wars began in human minds, so it was in human minds that the defence of peace must be constructed.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/74/SR.3