Mao mausoleum’s UN heritage application ‘justifiable’: observers

By Liu Xuanzun Source:Global Times Published: 2018/7/16 16:53:39


Chairman Mao Memorial Hall. Photo: VCG

Experts defended the inclusion of Chairman Mao Memorial Hall in applying a list of 14 heritage sites for UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage list, calling the move "justified" and "self-evident."

 "The Chairman Mao Memorial Hall is a historic cultural symbol," Su Wei, a professor at the Party School of the CPC Chongqing Municipal Committee, told the Global Times.

Remembering Mao Zedong is of historical significance because he is a founding architect of the People's Republic of China and presented the Three Worlds Theory. Mao is widely respected on the international stage, Su noted.

"Including the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall in the plan of Beijing Central Axis' UNESCO application is justified," he said.

Su's remarks came after Western media questioned the inclusion. The reports labeled sites like Chairman Mao Memorial Hall and Tiananmen Square as "controversial" and claimed they do not possess significant historical and cultural meaning compared with other sites like the Forbidden City and the Temple of Heaven.

The memorial hall is preparing for the application, a spokesperson surnamed Ma from the memorial hall told the Global Times.

Files and documents on the hall's history are being organized and will be submitted as part of the application, Ma said.

"Chairman Mao's historic significance is self-evident," Ma added.

Mao founded the People's Republic of China in 1949 after guiding the Communist Party of China to victory in the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression (1931-45) and the War of Liberation (1946-49). He also launched political and economic campaigns like the Great Leap Forward (1958-61) and Cultural Revolution (1966-76), which many people consider controversial. Mao died in the year of 1976.

The Chairman Mao Memorial Hall was built in 1976 in Tiananmen Square, where the city's Central Axis runs through.

Visitors can view Mao's embalmed body there every Tuesday to Sunday.

Beijing is preparing 14 heritage sites along the city's Central Axis for the city's Central Axis to match the application criteria of the UNESCO World Heritage by 2030, and to make it to the World Heritage List by 2035, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

The 14 heritage sites include Yongdingmen, the Temple of Agriculture (Xiannongtan), the Temple of Heaven, Zhengyangmen and its archery tower, Chairman Mao Memorial Hall, the Monument to the People's Heroes and the Tiananmen Square.

Newspaper headline: Mao mausoleum’s UN heritage application ‘justifiable’


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