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Sok An


Oral Archives of the
World Heritage Convention

ok An was a Cambodian politician and diplomat from the province of Takeo. He was one of the nine deputy prime ministers currently serving in Cambodia, as well as being the chairman of the Council of Ministers.

During his long political career, he was deeply involved in preserving the cultural heritage of his country. In particular, he was chairman of the APSARA authority, the body responsible for the protection and management of the Angkor region, created following the inscription of the site on the World Heritage List in 1992. This body, in collaboration with the International Committee of Experts ICC-Angkor, has been assisted by many countries in carrying out successful conservation projects. Sok An was also chairman of the National Commission for UNESCO, in addition to chairing the 37th session of the World Heritage Committee in Phnom Penh in 2013. Before his death, the King of Cambodia awarded him the honorary title of Samdech Vibal Panhia.

Interview with
Sok An
18 June 2014 in Doha, Qatar

The following audio excerpts are from an interview with Sok An by Christina Cameron and Mechtild Rössler the 18 June 2014 in Doha, Qatar. The interest of his testimony lies particularly in his vision of the aims of the Convention, in his proposed solutions to the incessant growth of the World Heritage List and in the passages which deal with the specific case of Angkor.

  • 1. The World Heritage Convention
  • 1a. Involvement and participation of Sok An in World Heritage
  • 1b. Aims of the World Heritage Convention
  • 1c. The World Heritage List
  • 2. The World Heritage Committee
  • 3. Advisory bodies: ICOMOS and ICCROM
  • 4. The commitment of States Parties to the World Heritage Convention: the example of Cambodia
  • 5. List of World Heritage in Danger and the case of Angkor

Oral Archives of the
World Heritage Convention

Under the leadership of the Canada Research Chair on Built Heritage at the University of Montreal, an international team of researchers conducts interviews with pioneers of World Heritage to capture memories of important moments in the history of UNESCO Convention.

Launched in 2006, this initiative is part of the UNESCO History project that celebrated the 60th anniversary of the creation of UNESCO. The Oral Archives project records the precious witness of people closely associated with the creation and implementation of the Convention. Their recollections and views have greatly enriched the book by Christina Cameron and Mechtild Rössler, Many Voices, One Vision: The Early Years of the World Heritage Convention (Ashgate/Routledge, 2013).

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Keywords 1
States parties 1
Date Start: Wednesday, 18 June 2014
Date end: Wednesday, 18 June 2014