Video screen shot with people in Blue Helmets clearing rubble from a house. Text reads Blue Shield Emergency Response for Cultural Property Protection

UNIFIL working with Blue Shield to secure the registered historic Ministry of Foreign Affairs building, Beirut, after the catastrophic explosion on 4 August.

Following the devastating explosion in Beirut, Lebanon, on 4th August 2020 Blue Shield Lebanon and partners have been working round the clock to compile a preliminary assessment of the damage, completing a Provisional Assessment Report (PAR) photo report CULTURAL HERITAGE DAMAGE ASSESSMENT OF BEIRUT BLAST. PRELIMINARY REPORT IN PHOTOS, compiled by (alphabetically) BSI, BS Lebanon, IFA, ICOM Lebanon, ICOMOS Lebanon, Lebanese Ministry of Culture, and UNESCO Beirut Office.

Since then more detailed damage assessments have taken place, and they have been working to secure all the affected buildings.

This video showcases the work of Blue Shield, and in particular the Lebanese National Committee of the Blue Shield, to carry out Emergency Response for Cultural Property following the explosion. The work was supported by and carried out in collaboration with Blue Shield Lebanon, Blue Shield International, Directorate-General Of Antiquities of Lebanon, IFLA, ICOM-Lebanon, ICOMOS-Lebanon, Lebanese Library Association, UNESCO Beirut Office, ICOM – University Museums and Collections, Biladi and UNIFIL. The work could not have been carried out without the generous financial support of the ALIPH Foundation, British Council Cultural Protection Fund and the Prince Claus Fund, to whom we are sincerely grateful.

Volunteers from Blue Shield Lebanon have worked tirelessly with UNIFIL and the Lebanese Directorate General of Antiquities (DGA) to secure buildings such as the registered historic Ministry of Foreign Affairs Building, shown here in this DGA video.

The work also demonstrates a key partnership developed with  UNIFIL – The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, who provided invaluable support to secure the building.

Building on the partnership in securing the buildings, and in previous training carried out with Blue Shield International, on Tuesday 27 October 2020, BSI and UNIFIL signed an MoU for further cooperation.

Visit the UNIFIL Website

Read about the MoU with UNIFIL

Read more about the work of Blue Shield International, and especially Blue Shield Lebanon, following the explosion in Beirut on 4 August.

Read about the Blue Shield / UNIFIL / DGA action plan to preserve heritage sites during conflict on the UNIFIL website