Monitoring center established in Palace Museum to protect cultural heritage

BEIJING, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) — The Palace Museum unveiled a monitoring center Monday that will coordinate the management of cultural heritage and provide a systematic database for the protection of the museum.

The monitoring management includes formulating working rules, monitoring technical criterion, providing warning standards, making plans for cultural protection, and completing the monitoring network.

Shan Jixiang, Director of the State Administration of Cultural Heritage (DSACH), said at the ceremony that the monitoring center was established under DSACH, and “special fees” had also been set up for the protection of world cultural heritage.

“China is determined to improve the protection over cultural heritage and will set up a warning system for world cultural heritage during the next five years,” Shan said.

The Palace Museum was listed as a World Heritage Site in 1987 by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). It preserves a large collection of invaluable cultural and historical relics.

In August, Museum director Zheng Xinmiao said that careless staff members damaged three relics that date back to the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Two ritual implements suffered damage in May 2004, and a flower receptacle was damaged in 2009, Zheng said.

In an effort to defuse public anger, Zheng has vowed to promote protection awareness among museum staff, upgrade its security system, and fully gauge potential risks in protection and exhibition activities.