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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Upcoming CPAC Meeting To Consider Honduras MoU Renewal - El Salvador Interim Review Also Expected

Today's Federal Register announces the U.S. Secretary of State's intention to propose a renewal of the cultural property Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Honduras. The request to extend the five year bilateral agreement, which restricts the importation of protected cultural property under the Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act (CPIA) will be considered during a public session to be held on October 30, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. in Washington, DC.

Maya carving in Copán in western Honduras.
The U.S. and Honduras entered bilateral agreements in 2004 and 2009 after Honduras' cultural patrimony was found to be in jeopardy from pillage, particularly from looting at thousands of archaeological sites across the country.

The Honduran MoU currently covers archaeological and ethnological material dating from 2000 B.C. to 1550 A.D. This time the State Department announces that "the Government of Honduras has asked that the MOU be amended to include material representing the Colonial and Republican periods of its cultural heritage" as well.

The Cultural Property Advisory Committee (CPAC) met in January 2013 to anticipate the Honduran renewal. That meeting was carried out in executive session. The upcoming meeting will have both a public session and an executive session.

Public comments regarding the Honduran MoU renewal may be submitted to CPAC by October 17 at Regulations.gov.

When CPAC meets from October 30 through November 1, it will also give an interim review of the bilateral agreement with El Salvador. That MoU served as the supporting basis for a federal smuggling conviction in U.S. v. Perez when authorities discovered that the defendant was selling pre-Columbian and pre-Hispanic pots imported illegally into the U.S. from El Salvador.

Public comments are expected to be accepted by CPAC on the bilateral agreement with El Salvador at a future date.

This post is researched, written, and published on the blog Cultural Heritage Lawyer Rick St. Hilaire at culturalheritagelawyer.blogspot.com. Text copyrighted 2010-2013 by Ricardo A. St. Hilaire, Attorney & Counselor at Law, PLLC. Any unauthorized reproduction or retransmission of this post is prohibited. CONTACT INFORMATION: www.culturalheritagelawyer.com