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An open Letter by Mohammad Ali Dadkhah,the spokesperson of Society of the Defenders of Human Rights in Iran
As a warning to UNESCO to avoid any further disregard of the worsening situation of Pasargad ancient site
And as a request from all the world inhabitants
It is now a few years that the question of erecting and flooding the Sivand Dam has been the focus of many arguments. The experts and analysts who have overall insight on the matter, have demanded the scrapping of the project, technically showing the damage it can inflict upon the environment, namely the Bakhtegan Lake, and irreversible destruction of Pasargad ancient complex.
About a year ago, since the relevant authorities were not paying any attention to this case and were on the verge of inaugurating this both physically and culturally damaging project, 4350 Iranian activists and intellectuals took this case to the judicial body for the government's employees, filing a complaint against the responsible authorities and demanding the stoppage of the dam operations. Unfortunately, there was no response to this action. Nevertheless, and only recently, the local official authorities of Pasargad have declared that the damages caused by the Sivand Dam to this valueless complex of Pasargad cultural site have become evident, proving that the inaction and disregard of the authorities has already inflicted damages to the most revered cultural heritage of country.
We should remember that the identity, independence and the relationship of Iranians to their country and civilization is much based on this nation's cultural heritage and a mass movement could be encouraged through such an incentive. Forgetting about such matters ultimately means to accept the losing of an ancient tradition, a glorious past and a cultural identity. It is upon this understanding that each Iranian is entitled to act seriously and fundamentally for the preservation this invaluable heritage.
On the other hand, based upon numerous international conventions and agreements, as well as article 27 of the Human Rights Declaration, it is upon all relevant authorities to endeavor for the preservation of precious and unique ancient artifacts and sites of the human civilization.
The necessity of innovation and development, too, entails the expansion and spread of the Iranian cultural identity and the elevation of its civilization through the application of suitable means.
History and future generations of mankind will not forgive us for treating our proud heritage in such a cruel way.
What is more discouraging is the inaction of international institutions, and especially UNESCO, standing aside and watching the destruction of Pasargad in a meaningful silence.
Upon the above premises and along with our serious warnings to UNESCO asking it to avoid any further disregard of the worsening situation of Pasargad, we call all humans, regardless of their nationalities, to remind UNESCO of its obligations and demand its immediate action in this regard.
Pasargad is the main ancient symbol of Persian civilization that has played a major role in the development of human social conscious. We ask for everybody's help in salvaging this common heritage of the mankind.
Society of Defenders of Human Rights in Iran