The 1954 Hague Convention
KATHMANDU: The hands of the watches had frozen at 8:15. This is one of the eerie memorabilia
in the Hiroshima museum capturing the time when the atom bomb went off on that fateful August 6, 1945. Initially Hiroshima was not the first on the list, it was Kyoto. It is said, how-ever, that it was removed from the list by the US Secretary of War, Henry L Stimson, because he had spent his honeymoon in Kyoto and respected the cultural significance of the historic city.
The UNESCO Constitution begins with an inspiring statement: “That since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defences of peace must be constructed.” A literal response to this was the formulation of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict and its Protocols. Nepal is in the process of ratifying this convention. It would be opportune to refer to some of the eloquently written statements in the introduction to the convention.