United Nations officially adds traditional Thai Massage to its intangible cultural heritage list

BANGKOK(NNT) – The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has formally added traditional Thai massage to its intangible cultural heritage list, following the traditional Khon dance that was previously listed.

The Minister of Culture Ittipol Khunpluem has revealed the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage, has added Nuad Thai, or traditional Thai massage, to the representative list of Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH).

The decision was announced at the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage’s 14th session in Bogota, Colombia.

Thailand became a state party of the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage on 10th June 2016. Traditional Thai massage is the second item from Thailand to be added to the Intangible Cultural Heritage list, following traditional Khon dance last year.

The Minister of Culture said today Thai massage is an aspect of traditional medicinal wisdom that is related to Buddhist teachings and local cultures. The massage is now a form of alternative medicinal therapy, applied in addition to modern medicine.

He said the nomination of traditional Thai massage as part of Intangible Cultural Heritage is a commitment according to the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, which is a right and duty according to international law. The nomination promotes international cooperation in the conservation of cultural heritage. Its recognition as an aspect of Intangible Cultural Heritage will promote conservation and the sense of cherishing, which will benefit Thailand’s economy and the tourism sector.

Source: NNT

Adam Judd
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