Unesco classifies the old town of Odessa as an endangered world heritage site
The UN cultural organization Unesco has declared the old town of the Ukrainian port city of Odessa, which was repeatedly shelled during the war, as an endangered world cultural heritage. This means that technical and financial aid can be used to ensure the protection and preservation of the threatened old town, Unesco announced in Paris on Wednesday. Odessa is located in southern Ukraine and is considered a cultural metropolis.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed UNESCO’s decision. “This international step will help us protect our Odessa,” he said in his daily video address on Wednesday evening. “Ukraine and the world offer protection, Russia can offer nothing but terror and attacks.”
Since the beginning of the Russian war of aggression, the city has been repeatedly attacked with rockets and cruise missiles. Most recently, the energy infrastructure was severely damaged, but residential buildings were also hit. Ukrainian authorities are trying to protect works of art on site or bring them to safety.