The Russian invasion of Ukraine blatantly breached one of the most fundamental principles of international law, which is respect for the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of nations and violates basic human rights. As a world archaeological community whose Statutes include the sentence: (article 2.3.d) ‘…respect in all its activities the principles of the UN and UNESCO regarding Human Rights…’ and whose causes prominently include the furtherance of indigenous rights and other fundamental human rights, we condemned the invasion by issuing the statement in multilingual forms: https://worldarchaeologicalcongress.com/blog/world-archaeological-congress-statement-on-the-invasion-of-ukraine-by-the-armed-forces-of-the-russian-federation-as-ordered-by-president-vladimir-vladimirovich-putin/ Following up on it, the Council approved the establishment of the WAC Special Committee on the Russian invasion of Ukraine on 29 March 2022. The Committee is set up to fulfill the following objectives:
- To collect information concerning the ongoing situation incurred by the Russian invasion of Ukraine (the War hereinafter) for the decision making of WAC on matters concerning the War.
- To monitor the ongoing situation incurred by the War and inform the Council for it to consider and decide how to react.
- To curate information that reaches the Council through WAC Listserv or other means and advice, the Communications Committee which information can be/should be shared which cannot/should not.
- To advise the Council on how to undertake specific tasks, including aid for members/colleagues in affected areas, including neighbouring countries, and for their works of conserving damaged heritage.
- To consider and give the Council general advice on how WAC should conduct itself in reaction to the War by taking into consideration WAC’s responsibility as a world archaeological community to ongoing wars and the members, colleagues and heritage in the war-torn countries/areas.
The Committee comprises:
- The Executive Officers
- The Central and Eastern European Senior and Junior Representative
- Those WAC members whom the Council deemed necessary and appropriate, including a student representative and an Indigenous representative.
The initial term of office of the Committee shall be until 8 July, i.e, the end of WAC-9 Prague 2022. Thereafter, the Council shall decide if the term of office of the Committee shall be further extended. Correspondingly, we have set up a designated page on our website for gathering and sharing information concerning the War: https://worldarchaeologicalcongress.com/support-for-ukraine/ Do please send information and feedback to the WAC Listserv, by adding ‘Ukraine’ to the title. Thank you very much.
President of the World Archaeological Congress