(Palestinian Dept. of Antiquities of Gaza; Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Gaza, Palestine)
The district of Gaza was always one of the most important regions of Near East, located on the ancient sea high way, connecting between Asia and Africa, serving as a terminus of the east-west caravan route that led from Arabia to the rest of the Mediterranean, and providing an extremely fertile and well-watered soil, which is extremely important in such spot between Palestine and the desert of Sinai. This important location made Gaza one of the richest Palestinian areas of archaeological sites and historic buildings.
A large part of the this cultural property has been facing major problems, caused mainly by series of military confrontations and occupations, hence hundreds of buildings were destroyed, a large number of archaeological sites have been excavated and its entire uncovered material culture was transported or looted in violating of the related International conventions, specifically the Hague convention of 1954 for the protection of cultural property in the event of armed conflict and its 2nd protocol.
Despite these loses, it is fitting to mention the efforts of many Palestinian institutions and individuals devoted to protect, restore and document the cultural property. Among these efforts are two important projects have been conducted in the old city of Gaza: a photogrametric architectural survey for the restoration-project of the Great al-‘Umari mosque; and the digitized architectural survey of the historic buildings.
In the view of Gaza region, this paper endeavors to illuminate the following topics:
- The cultural property and Types of violations.
- Efforts devoted to protect and restore the cultural property.
- Two case studies: Photogrametric survey and Digitized documentation.
The paper is accompanied by illustrations.
keywords: violations, protection and restoration, photogrametric survey, digitalized documentation