Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict - 1954

    adopted at The Hague, 14 May 1954

    Official texts:


    The Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict adopted at The Hague (Netherlands) in 1954 in the wake of massive destruction of the cultural heritage in the Second World War is the first international treaty of a world-wide vocation focusing exclusively on the protection of cultural heritage in the event of armed conflict.

    It covers immovables and movables, including monuments of architecture, art or history, archaeological sites, works of art, manuscripts, books and other objects of artistic, historical or archaeological interest, as well as scientific collections of all kinds regardless of their origin or ownership.

    The States which are party to the Convention benefit from a network of more than 100 States that agreed have undertaken to lessen the consequences of armed conflict for cultural heritage and to take preventive measures for such protection not only in time of hostility (when it is usually too late), but also in time of peace, by a variety of measures :

    • safeguard and respect cultural property during both international and non-international armed conflicts;
    • consider registering a limited number of refuges, monumental centres and other immovable cultural property of very great importance in the International Register of Cultural Property under Special Protection and obtain special protection for such property;
    • consider marking of certain important buildings and monuments with a special protective emblem of the Convention;
    • set up special units within the military forces to be responsible for the protection of cultural heritage;
    • penalize violations of the Convention and to promote widely the Convention within the general public and target groups such as cultural heritage professionals, the military or law-enforcement agencies.


    Learn more about the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict.


    • Year of approval :1954