As a reflection of the world's diversity, movable cultural heritage nourishes our future with our shared past, provided it is protected from illicit traffic.
Ancient jewellery discovered on archaeological sites, objects found in burial chambers and religious buildings, sculpted stones, all sorts of art objects, rare books and manuscripts, seals and ancient coins, textiles and fine furniture, ancient musical instruments, photographs, films, stamps, but also fossils. All of this heritage – which are sometimes exhibited in museums – deserve our attention because they reflect past and present creativity and aesthetics and help to preserve the cultural identity of the communities that produced them.
UNESCO's role in this field is to foster an integrated approach and understanding of cultural heritage and to highlight the links between creativity and heritage.
Special efforts must be made to preserve movable heritage, including artefacts lying on the bottom of the seas (i.e., underwater heritage) by combating all forms of illicit trafficking.