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Safeguarding Moenjodaro

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Safeguarding Moenjodaro


Safeguarding Moenjodaro
Moenjodaro, located on the right bank of the Indus River, 510 km north-east of Karachi, in Pakistan's Sindh Province, flourished for about 1000 years during the third and second millennium BC. This city of the Indus civilization was excavated in the 1920s and 1930s, spreading over an area of almost 600 acre and 10% of which has been excavated and was one of the most ancient planned cities in the world built entirely of fired brick in accordance to a carefully designed urban planning scheme. The site, with its monumental structural remains, street pattern, covered drains, baths, wells and all necessary features needed for sanitation and administration, is known as the first urban centre of the Indus civilization. The archaeological Ruins at Moenjodaro was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1980.
 
This huge cultural heritage site, became increasingly threatened with decay by exposure to harsh climatic conditions, floods from the Indus River, deterioration due to salts rising from the high water-table, and water-logging. In 1974, after an appeal from the Pakistani Government, UNESCO launched the International Safeguarding Campaign for Moenjodaro. It lasted until 1997 and mobilized around US $ 23 million for large scale conservation measures which aimed at protecting the site from flooding, control of the ground-water table, implementation of national capacity building activities and for the installation of a conservation and monitoring laboratory.

After the closure of the UNESCO International Safeguarding Campaign for Mohenjodaro in 1997, the UNESCO Division for Cultural Heritage and World Heritage Centre reinitiated their collaboration and developed a post campaign strategy in 2004, which identified further areas of interventions such as: management structure, conservation and stabilization, training and capacity building, site and tourism development. To date, the majority of activities have focused on and greatly improved the overall management, conservation and stabilization of the walls and structures and reinforced national training and capacities of site managers and workers.