UNESCO Names Yogyakarta's Historical Axis a World Heritage
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) set the Cosmological Axis of Yogyakarta and its Historic Landmarks (Sumbu Filosofi Yogyakarta) as one of the world heritage from Indonesia during the 45th Session of World Heritage Committee (WHC) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Monday, September 18, 2023. Present in the session was the Vice Governor of Yogyakarta, KGPAA Sri Paduka Paku Alam X.
"Congratulations to Indonesia for the appointment of the Cosmological Axis of Yogyakarta and its Historic Landmarks as a World Heritage," said the WHC Chairperson Abdulelah Al-Tokhais in a written statement received in Yogyakarta on Tuesday, September 19, 2023.
Responding to the appointment, Yogyakarta Governor Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono X stated that the success is a result of the cooperation between all stakeholders and an appreciation toward Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono I's masterpiece. The cosmological axis, he said, is a cultural heritage with high philosophical value, worthy of preservation.
"We thank UNESCO and all residents of [Yogyakarta] who have supported the preservation measure of the cosmological axis as a world heritage," he said. The governor hopes that this appointment could be used as a learning process about the necessary universal values to create a better world in the future.
The Indonesian Ambassador for Saudi Arabia Abdul Aziz Ahmad expressed his gratitude as the leader of Indonesian delegates at the session toward UNESCO's WHC. "We feel honored to bestow this pearl into the World Heritage List, a beautiful mixture of tangible and intangible cultural heritage," he said.
Meanwhile, Paku Alam X stressed that this appointment is an extraordinary tribute from the world to Yogyakarta's cultural value as the city's identity. "Yogyakarta's culture contributes to the preservation of the world's prosperity," he added.
According to the head of the Yogyakarta Cultural Office Dian Lakshmi Pratiwi, the main purpose of this appointment is to preserve the priceless cultural heritage of Yogyakarta. Dian said that maintaining the status would be harder than obtaining it since the cosmological axis is no longer owned by Yogyakarta but also by the world.
The Cosmological Axis of Yogyakarta and its Historic Landmarks were first established in the 18th century by Sultan Mangkubumi. The spatial planning of the cosmological axis was based on the Javanese conception, forming a south-north axis with Krapyak Stage on the south side and Kraton Yogyakarta and Tugu Yogyakarta on the north side.
Traditional Javanese cultural practices, including the governmental system, customary law, art, cultural festivals, and others are still being conducted around the cosmological axis and Yogyakarta in general.
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