ICOFORT Conference - Diyarbakir, Turkey [11-14/04/2013]

ICOMOS Hellenic has been invited to participate to an international conference which took place in Diyarbakir Turkey, from 11 th to 14 th April 2013. The conference has been organized by the International Committee on Fortifications and Military Heritage (ICOFORT) in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Turkey, the Governorship of Diyarbakir and the Metropolitan Municipality of Diyarbakir. The Hellenic delegation, comprised of 15 members of ICOMOS Hellenic, among which some are also members of ICOFORT, accepted the invitation and contributed to the event with posters, written presentations and announcements made by: Evangelia Kardara (MSc), member of ICOFORT, Georgia Katsigianni , Kostas Katsigiannis , Dr Helena Korka , Vasileios Kotsiaris , Dr Nikolaos Lianos , member of ICOFORT, Angelos Nakasis (MSc), Dr Athanasios Nakasis , member of ICOFORT, Maria Oikonomou , Vasileios Palantzas , Ioannis Panopoulos , Chrysiis Samiou , Sophia Spyropoulou , member of ICOFORT, Andromachi Vassilopoulou , Dr Ourania Viziinou and Dr Eugenia Zouzoula (see attached program and feedback on the conference).

Diyarbakir Province and Fortress comprise a characteristic example of a geographical region that carries the traces of many civilizations from prehistoric to modern times, all established in close relation with the Tigris River. Like many historical centers of settlement in Mesopotamia, Diyarbakir was founded on the banks of this river and it has been always a natural point of passage and a gateway between Asia Minor, the Middle East and the Caucasus.

Diyarbakir Fortress and Towers have been included in 2000 in the Tentative List of UNESCO World Heritage. The preparation of the UNESCO folder for Diyarbakir Fortress and Site Management Plan has been since under compilation.

One of the main objectives of this international meeting has been the presentation on behalf of the local authorities of the restoration and conservation work that has been conducted so far on the walls, the towers and the buildings inside the fortified city.

On behalf of ICOMOS Hellenic, Dr. N. Lianos , Secretary General and Professor at the Technical University of Thrace, Polyneikis Aggelis , member of ICOMOS, and Aggelis have contributed to the Diyarbakir Project by implementing and presenting a 3D Digital Model of Urfa Gate.

At the end of the conference a round table discussion was carried out among all participants aiming to provide guidelines and to comment on the progress of the Diyarbakir project. Dr. A. Nakasis , president of ICOMOS Hellenic and voting member of ICOFORT, Dr. Nikolaos Lianos , member of ICOFORT and Dr. E. Korka , Vice President for South eastern Mediterranean Region ICAHM and member of ICOMOS Hellenic, have contributed to the discussion by suggesting and analyzing proposals on the following matters:


  • The implementation of a legal status of the buffer zones around the fortification walls and the realization of all necessary actions to discourage the construction within these zones, which will impact the conservation, the protection or the management plan of the site.
  • The promotion of international collaboration through education and science in order to share and exchange knowledge and know how on restoration and heritage preservation. It is also important for the local authorities to address to other scientific committees of ICOMOS as well to contribute to the efforts.
  • Emphasis on the need to involve all faculties and specialties (architects, engineers, conservators, archaeologists, financial managers etc) to assist and contribute to the project. The establishment of an interdisciplinary team or committee responsible for the management of the project is of crucial importance.
  • Promote the landscape factor in combination with the military heritage, since Diyarbakir has been throughout the centuries a frontier and a center of many civilizations because of its landscape and fertile land.
  • Protection of urban heritage inside the walls is also very important and it should be regarded as an integrated part of the objectives of the project.
  • Participation of the citizens and financial assistance by NGOs for the sustainability of cultural heritage.
  • Promotion of the intangible heritage of the Diyarbakir region, such as music, dance etc.



 Ν.Lianos 3D Digital Presentation