Govt delegates sign Pompeii protocol on UNESCO standards
Signatures just in time to meet Dec. 31 UN deadline23 December, 19:40
Officials signed the pact in time to meet the December 31 deadline set by the United Nations agency.
The arrangement will help Italy with a series of upgrades required to maintain Pompeii's position on UNESCO's prestigious list of World Heritage sites.
The protocol signed on Monday includes measures dealing with the management and overview of the archeological sites of Ercolano and Torre Annunziata as well as Pompeii. In July, UNESCO warned Italy that it had until the end of the year to improve the management of the heritage site.
It ordered a series of upgrades including installation of video surveillance over 50% of the archaeological area and a buffer zone around the site. The management system at Pompeii as well as sections of antique structures that had fallen in the past two years have triggered new concerns about Italy's ability to protect the 2,000-year-old treasure from further degradation. The site has been allegedly plagued for decades by accusations of mismanagement, neglect, and even mafia infiltration.
In March, the European Commission approved an injection of 105 million euros in restoration funds for Pompeii's ailing monuments, to be combined with matching money from Italy.