The Delos Initiative Fourth International Workshop, Malta
Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq (Malta)2017
The fourth international workshop of the Delos Initiative was held in Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq (Malta) from 23 to 27 April 2017, with the aim of providing guidance for the safeguarding of sacred natural sites in technologically developed countries. .
The workshop focused on the presentation and critical analysis of case studies from 12 countries (Saudi Arabia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Spain, Greece, Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Malta, Morocco, Serbia, South Africa and Turkey) predominant those where Islam is the main religious tradition. It included traditional conservation figures, such as the himas, which, while not equivalent to ‘holy places’, are based on Islamic principles. From the presentations, lessons were drawn regarding the integration of spiritual values in the management of protected natural spaces, which were included in a final statement.
The workshop also included visits to some of the major megalithic temples, built between 2400 and 3600 BC, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with expert guidance from Reuben Grima, a professor in the Department of Conservation and Built Heritage. of Malta. Throughout its sessions, lessons were identified for inclusion in a future IUCN Best Practive Guidelines, complementary to that published by IUCN and UNESCO in 2008, including lessons from sacred natural sites linked to the world’s religions.
The workshop was organized by Med-INA (Mediterranean Institute for Nature and Anthropos) and the Silene Association, in collaboration with the University of Malta – Institute of Earth Systems. The opening ceremony was presided over by Prof. Louis F. Cassar, Institute of Earth Systems, University of Malta, Prof. Victor Axiak, Head of the Malta Environment and Resources Authority (ERA), Mgr. Charles Scicluna, Catholic Archbishop of Malta and Mr. Mohamed El Sadi, Imam of Malta.
The volume of the proceedings will be published following the format of the previous three workshops.
More information: Malta Workshop – The Delos Initiative