United States Information Agency Home Page
International Cultural Property Protection
HomeSite IndexImage Database
About International Cultural Property Protection What Will I Find in the Cultural Property Web Site?
The United States Information Agency (USIA) is responsible for implementing the Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act (the Act). This is the enabling legislation for the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property. In accordance with the Act, USIA accepts requests from countries for import restrictions on archaeological or ethnological artifacts, the pillage of which places their national cultural heritage in jeopardy. The Cultural Property Advisory Committee, appointed by the president of the United States and administered by USIA, reviews these requests and makes recommendations to USIA. Under the president's authority, USIA makes a decision with regard to the request and may enter into a cultural property agreement with the requesting country. USIA's cultural property staff supports these functions and related activities and serves as a center of expertise on global cultural heritage protection issues.
  Smuggled Moche backflap recently siezed by the FBI and returned to Peru. Protecting Cultural Property
The problem of pillage, what's new, including the recent receipt of a cultural property request from the Government of Italy (updated 9/23/99), and recent reports of looting, theft, prosecution, and recovery on the World Wide Web (updated 9/17/99).
Mayan Vessel from Guatemala The U.S. Response
U.S. implementation of the 1970 UNESCO Convention including an overview of the process, committee membership, text of  agreements, U.S. Customs import restrictions on certain categories of archaeological and ethnological materials, and illustrations of materials subject to import restriction.
Parthenon, Athens U.S. and International Laws
U.S. and international cultural property laws and conventions and links to U.S. and international law enforcement agencies and non-governmental organizations.
      Photo Credits 

Site Index | Disclaimer & Credits | Contact Us | Back To Top  
Revised: September 23, 1999

On October 1, 1999, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs will become part of the
U.S. Department of State. Bureau webpages are being updated accordingly. Thank you for your patience.