General Objective : to increase the knowledge about Afghanistan's cultural heritage.


Established in 1994 by a group of concerned individuals in response to the growing awareness of the vulnerability of the cultural heritage of Afghanistan, SPACH works to promote cultural heritage as an integral part of the overall reconstruction effort. SPACH is working in partnership with the Afghan community to raise awareness of the central importance of cultural heritage for this generation and for those to follow, and the significant role that Afghan heritage can play in building peace.

Since the outbreak of war in 1979, major historical monuments, artifacts and archaeological sites across the country have been threatened by fighting, looting and neglect. This threat became acute in 1992 with the looting and destruction of the Kabul Museum and culminated in 2001 when the international community witnessed the destruction of the Buddhas of Bamiyan. Notwithstanding the significance of these events, the danger to Afghanistan's cultural heritage has grown steadily over the past few years, as evidenced by an increase in the looting and destruction of important sites in virtually every province of the country.

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Visit to the Museum after its looting (1994)© C. Bellau Upper floor before removal of rubble (1993)© J. Leslie

Burnt cards of the Museum inventory (1993)
© J. Leslie

Museum ground floor (1994) © J. Leslie

Khwaja Parsa (2003)
© R. Kluyver
Big Buddha (2003)
© A. Rodriguez
Musalla Complex (2002)
© A. Rodriguez