U.S. and Peru Extend MOU to Protect Peruvian Cultural Property

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Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Bruce Zagaris

On June 8, 2012, the Department of State announced the extension of the “Memorandum of Understanding Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Republic of Peru Concerning the Imposition of Import Restrictions on Archaeological Material from the Pre-Hispanic Cultures and Certain Ethnological Material from the Colonial Period of Peru” (MOU). The Department of Homeland Security has published notification of the extended restrictions in the Federal Register, effective June 9, 2012.The MOU covers archaeological remains of ancient cultures - such as the Chavin, Moche, Cuzco, Incas - that developed in Peru from 12,000 B.C. to A.D. 1532. Their achievements include the construction of city complexes; advances in metallurgy; the production of textiles, gold and silver jewelry, and unique styles of polychrome ceramic vessels. They are a reminder that the accomplishments of these ancient cultures are among the most important in the history of mankind. The MOU also protects ethnological material produced during the Colonial period (A.D. 1532-1821) such as sculpture and paintings with stylistically distinct iconography.[1]

[1]               U.S. Department of State, United States and Peru Extend Agreement to Protect Peruvian Heritage, Press Release, June 8, 2012 http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2012/06/192024.htm.