Prince Sultan: King Salman Has Witnessed the Archaeological Sector since Its Inception and Stood Firmly Against the Destruction of the National Heritage Sites


Prince Sultan bin Salman in press statements after the kick off of "Treasures of China exhibition"
Prince Sultan: King Salman Has Witnessed the Archaeological Sector since Its Inception and Stood Firmly Against the Destruction of the National Heritage Sites

  • The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques has adopted the issuance of historical resolutions to protect the antiquities since the reign of King Saud
  • The archaeology sector is not a new one … and we build on the achievement of our predecessors who had the excellence that we reap its fruits today
  • We are proud that the archaeology sector has achieved an advanced level in the archaeological discoveries and the national competencies working there
  • We are keen to select foreign missions, to accompany them and to accurately document our civilization
  • The National Museum will witness a great project for development, and a Board of Trustees for the museum will be announced soon
  • The SCTH is working now on 30 projects for museums and heritage buildings, to be transformed into complete cultural centres and interactive centres for our national heritage
  • Cultural and humanitarian exchange is important for any relations between two countries, as the economic and political relations alone are not adequate

His Royal Highness Prince Sultan bin Salman bin Abdul-Aziz, President of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, confirmed that The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman Bin Abdul-Aziz, may Allah protect him, is the first supporter of the archaeology sector in Saudi Arabia. He has been present since its inception 50 years ago. He has firmly opposed the removal or destruction of antiquity sites and national heritage. He even adopted the issuance of important and historic resolutions to protect antiquities since the reign of King Saud, may Allah bless his soul, pointing out that the sector is not new and that the SCTH has built on the achievement of its predecessors who have the excellence that we reap its fruits today. The institutional work is what completes what the formers had started and develops on it and does not marginalize them.

In his press statements after his opening of ‘Treasures of China’ exhibition on Wednesday evening, hosted by the National Museum in Riyadh, His Highness said,’ "The Saudi national antiquities sector is not new. We are building on what officials, scientists and citizens have built before us. They worked in the sector and did more than we did. The national antiquities sector has started from the time of King Abdul Aziz, may Allah bless his soul, who commissioned Abdullah Philby and another group to document the antiquities. There were many travellers who came to our country and provided a great service to us because they had defined the sites and uncovered the antiquities. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman, may Allah protect him, has witnessed the archaeological sector for more than 50 years. I attended many intersections where there was a danger to the antiquities, and there were important historical decisions related to the national antiquities. He, may Allah protect him, supported the kings of Saudi Arabia since the time of King Saud, may Allah have mercy on him, King Faisal and the kings who succeeded them, may Allah bless their souls. Today, this sector is an advanced sector both at the level of its employees of Saudi competencies or at the level of achievements of archaeological discoveries, protection, museums and others. Today, we turnout many experiences of young Saudi men and women working in archaeology.We are proud of this thing. This is a sector that also uses the highest standards of technology and works with the best museums and prestigious scientific institutions. Everyone wants to come to Saudi Arabia to explore its antiquities, but we are keen to let them participate with the Saudi missions in the excavations, and to work in a way that we confide. We oblige them to employ Saudi scientists and young people to work with them. We are the ones who specify the sites not them. The missions should consist of distinguished experts. They should not come as intruders who draw up history and customize it according to what they see. We are really keen on accuracy when documenting the history of the Arabian Peninsula, this great history that tells the story of this globally important geographical place’.

His Highness pointed out that the National Museum will witness a large project for development, and will soon announce the formation of a Board of Trustees of the National Museum, exactly like the international museums, in addition to advisory councils of regional museums.

He said, ‘The Commission is now working on 30 projects for regional and specialized museums and heritage buildings that will be transformed into full cultural centres and interactive centres for our national heritage, including children's programs. Now, we use the highest standards of technology and work on taking artefacts out of the stores and archaeological excavations to museums.

His Highness stressed that cultural and human exchange is important for any relations between two countries as the economic and political relations alone are not adequate; and if you want relations to settle and continue, people should recognize each other. The most important aspect of this recognition is the recognition of civilization and history.

He said,’Saudi Arabia has a lot of natural, cultural and heritage resources. Everything you see today, such as registering sites on the World Heritage List of UNESCO in Ula, in the historic Diriyah or recently in Al-Ahsa and others, and now we are going to list “Rijal Almaa”, all of these are only parts of a series that point to wider locations in these places. "
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