Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Saudi National Committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS Saudi Arabia), to support and improve the preservation of cultural heritage in AlUla through awareness-raising and capacity building, in addition to supporting research in protecting archaeological sites, by developing the best procedures and knowledge sharing.
The MoU was signed by Princess Dr. Nouf bint Mohammed bin Fahd bin Abdulaziz, Chairman of the Board of Directors of ICOMOS, and RCU CEO Eng. Amr bin Saleh Al-Madani.
The Royal Commission said that the agreement comes as part of its endeavor to strengthen partnerships with various relevant authorities and to achieve the primary goals of the Commission in making AlUla a center for knowledge and heritage preservation by involving specialists in cultural heritage, scholars and talented personnel from inside and outside the Kingdom.
ICOMOS Saudi Arabia seeks to coordinate and cooperate with all authorities responsible for heritage in the Kingdom to promote and support conservation and preservation efforts for heritage sites per international best practices and in accordance with World Heritage standards and guidelines.
Princess Dr. Nouf bint Mohammed said, "The agreement establishes a strategic partnership in the areas of preserving tangible and intangible heritage, and supports the implementation of programs that include fieldwork to conduct and publish research and studies by specialized experts, in addition to its contribution to the development of local capabilities in managing heritage sites in AlUla."
Eng. Amr Al-Madani said, "The signing of this agreement corresponds to the efforts that aim to achieve the vision of AlUla and the goals of the Kingdom's Vision 2030 through sustainable development, to develop the province and preserve its cultural heritage, to make AlUla as the largest living museum in the world."
According to the agreement, six programs will be activated, including the establishment of a joint presentation studio for archives between the Kingdoms Institute and ICOMOS, hosting local, regional, and international conferences in AlUla, translating scientific publications in antiquities preservation into Arabic, and qualifying and training students and specialists in heritage.
The main area of cooperation will focus on the alliance and effective partnership in issues related to the preservation of cultural and natural heritage sites in general and the World Heritage site of the "Al-Hajar" site in particular, as well as heritage sites that are identified in the future to preserve the exceptional values of the sites, as well as opening an ICOMOS headquarters in the old town of AlUla.