World Heritage Centre http://whc.unesco.org?cid=305&l=en&action=list&searchDecisions=&year_start=2000&year_end=2000&index=61&maxrows=20&mode=rss World Heritage Centre - Committee Decisions 90 en Copyright 2019 UNESCO, World Heritage Centre Sat, 24 Aug 2019 13:58:50 EST UNESCO, World Heritage Centre - Decisions http://whc.unesco.org/document/logowhc.jpg http://whc.unesco.org 24 BUR IV.B.72 Taxila (Pakistan) / Fort and Shalamar Gardens of Lahore (Pakistan) In May 2000, the World Heritage Centre received information from the national authorities that the Department of Archaeology would restore the demolished hydraulic works of Shalamar Gardens, and that the football stadium constructed on Bhir Mound (600 BC – 200 AD) at Taxila would be demolished. The authorities had stated that the south-eastern wall of the stadium had been demolished and that the boundary wall on the remaining sides would also be demolished. The Centre was informed that the “rooms” constructed on the northern side will be utilized for watch and ward staff on the site.

At its twenty-third session, the Bureau recalled that, evidences of illegal excavations at two of the archaeological remains in Taxila had been witnessed by a UNESCO mission. At the time of the mission, the representatives of the Government of Pakistan had confirmed that large-scale illegal excavation by looters in search of antiquities within the Buddhist monastery sites had increased in recent years. At its twenty-third session, the Bureau had requested the Government of Pakistan to undertake archaeological research at unexcavated sites at Taxila and to adequately protect the sites from illegal looters. In view of Pakistan’s adherence to the UNESCO 1970 Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property, the Bureau had recommended the authorities of Pakistan to strengthen security at the archaeological remains of Taxila and the customs control at the borders of the North-Western Frontier Province. The Bureau had also requested the Government to undertake an impact assessment study of the heavy industries and military bases in the Taxila Valley areas. Although the Bureau had requested the Government of Pakistan to submit a report by 15 September 1999 on the actions taken, information had not been received concerning the control of illegal excavations and the impact assessment study at the time of the twenty-fourth session of the Bureau.

The Bureau was informed that during consultations between the World Heritage Centre and the Permanent Delegation of Pakistan to UNESCO held since the twenty-third session of the Committee, the national authorities had expressed their intention to nominate the two sites on the List of World Heritage in Danger, in view of the serious threats facing the authenticity and integrity of the Shalamar Gardens and Bhir Mound of Taxila. However, official nomination had not been received to date. The Centre reported that in the meantime, the Centre and ICOMOS were organizing ICOMOS reactive monitoring missions to be undertaken before the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau, to elaborate a comprehensive management plan for both the Fort and Shalamar Gardens of Lahore site and the Taxila site.

The Delegate of Zimbabwe underscored the alarming situation at these two sites where monuments protected under the Convention were being demolished or archaeological values undermined.

The Observer of Pakistan reiterated the recent decision taken by her Government to restore the hydraulic works of Shalamar Gardens. Moreover, the Bureau was informed that the dismantling of the boundary walls of the football stadium constructed on Bhir Mound had commenced. Since May 2000, one third of the wall had already been demolished, while further excavation is being carried out on Bhir Mound. The Observer assured the Bureau of the Government’s resolve to undertake corrective measures to safeguard the World Heritage values of these two sites. Finally, the Observer reiterated the Government’s commitment to adhere to the provisions of the World Heritage Convention.

The Bureau examined the report of the Secretariat and requested the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS to continue the organization of the reactive monitoring missions to the Fort and Shalamar Gardens of Lahore and Taxila World Heritage sites. The Bureau requested the Findings and Recommendations of the Missions to be reported to the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau.

The Bureau, expressing its appreciation for the information received from the Pakistan authorities concerning its intentions to undertake corrective measures for Bhir Mound and the Shalamar Gardens, requested the Government of Pakistan to report on further actions taken to restore the 375 year old hydraulic works and to demolish the football stadium, to the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau.

The Bureau reiterated its request to the Government of Pakistan made at its twenty-third session for information concerning actions taken to strengthen security at the archaeological remains of Taxila and the customs control at the borders of the North-Western Frontier Province, as well as the progress made in undertaking an impact assessment study of the heavy industries in the Taxila Valley areas. The Bureau requested the Government of Pakistan to submit a report by 15 September 2000 on the actions taken, for examination by the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau.

Finally, the Bureau requested the World Heritage Centre to continue consultations with the authorities of Pakistan concerning the Government’s intentions to nominate the two sites on the List of World Heritage in Danger.  A report on the results should be provided to the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau to enable it to formulate recommendations for the decision of the Committee.

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5832 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR IV.B.73 Auschwitz Concentration Camp (Poland) The Secretariat informed the Bureau that it had received on 21 June 2000, a brief report from the Polish authorities on the state of affairs for the planning and preservation for the World Heritage site of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camps. This report included the following information:

  1. An International Council for Auschwitz and Birkenau Concentration Camps was set up on 29 March 2000 under the chairmanship of an ex-minister for Foreign Affairs and with the participation of both national and international experts and institutions. The Council met for the first time on 7 June 2000 and will co-operate with and advise on the protection, management and presentation of the Camps and in obtaining the necessary means for the functioning of the Auschwitz Museum.
  2. A Spatial Plan for the surroundings of Auschwitz, including a plan on scale 1:4000, had been prepared and had been subject to a long consultation process. A municipal resolution for the approval of the final version of the plan had been drafted. The Spatial Plan for the surroundings of Birkenau was less advanced but a plan on scale 1:4000 had been elaborated.
  3. Both plans, translated into English, had been transmitted to the International Expert Group that was established in 1999. Due to scheduling problems, this Group was not able to meet so far in 2000 but two conference calls took place. The next meeting is scheduled for September 2000. Two new members had been appointed on the Expert Group, one from Poland and one from Hungary.

The Bureau noted the information provided by the State Party on the progress made in the implementation of the Strategic Governmental Programme for Oswiecim and that the International Expert Group would meet in September 2000. It requested the authorities to submit a progress report by 15 September 2000 for examination by the Committee at its twenty-fourth session.

As to the request from the Polish National Commission for UNESCO for the Committee’s views on the matter of the restitution from the Auschwitz Museum to the author of portraits made during her imprisonment in the Camp, the Bureau of the World Heritage Committee at its twenty-third extraordinary session concluded that legal advice from the Secretariat was required before this matter could be further examined by the Bureau or the Committee. The Secretariat informed the Bureau that the Office of Legal Affairs of UNESCO was of the opinion that this matter does not come within the framework of the World Heritage Convention.  The Bureau took note of this advice.

The Observer of Israel, who is also a member of the International Expert Group, noted that, in fact, the World Heritage site should be called Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camps. He also noted that the Spatial Plans refer to the urban town plans areas surrounding the Camps and not specifically to the World Heritage site itself. As to the restitution of the portraits, he recognised that this had also an emotional dimension and that there was a need to urge the parties to reach a conciliation.

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5833 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR IV.B.74 Angra do Heroismo (Portugal) The Secretariat informed the Burea that it had received two reports from the Permanent Delegation of Portugal: (1) report of meeting on the marina project (13-14 January 2000, attended by the ICOMOS-designated expert), and (2) a Periodic Report on the State of Angra and its Sea Front (dated 10 April 2000).

The Periodic Report provided information on:

  • The adoption of a plan for the Urban Involvement of the Angra Bay;
  • Models developed for the marina dam, its connection to the city and support services;
  • Status of development of the areas along the Bay, including the eighteenth-century staircase and the remains of the Porta do Mar.

The ICOMOS expert, who had been involved for several years in the examination of this project, advised that the recommendations of the World Heritage Committee and the involvement of ICOMOS have given positive results.  These involved the formulation of a series of plans for urban preservation and the relation between the historical centre and the urban area, and the solution of the problem of the integration of the proposed marina. He had made some specific recommendations for further follow-up.

The Bureau commended the authorities of Portugal and the Regional Government of the Azores for the report and the actions it had taken in response to the recommendations formulated by the Committee, its Bureau and the ICOMOS expert. It encouraged the authorities to continue to involve the ICOMOS expert in the further planning process for the marina and the area that will connect the marina with the city, as well as in the preparation of the Special Protection Plan for the city of Angra do Heroismo.

The Bureau requested the authorities to submit a progress report on the above by 15 April 2001 for examination by the Bureau at its twenty-fifth session.

The Observer of Portugal highlighted the positive involvement of the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS in this project and the good progress that was made over the past years. He expressed the wish of his Government to continue this collaboration in the future.  He reminded the members of the Bureau and the advisory bodies that the idea behind the construction of the marina was to give life to the area and thus give it the same character as in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The Delegate of Australia congratulated Portugal for the way it had made use of the system of periodic reporting.

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5834 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR IV.B.75 Cultural Landscape of Sintra (Portugal) The Secretariat informed the Bureau that the Permanent Delegation of Portugal had submitted on 5 May 2000, a report concerning the state of conservation of Sintra which was transmitted to IUCN and ICOMOS for review. ICOMOS expressed reservations about the state of conservation of the site and indicated that a joint ICOMOS-IUCN mission would be required. Both IUCN and the Observer of Portugal endorsed this proposal.  The latter informed the Bureau that Sintra, because of its location, 20 km from Lisbon, was under strong pressure (urban development, tourism).

The Bureau, therefore, requested ICOMOS and IUCN to undertake a joint mission to Sintra to examine the state of conservation of the cultural landscape of Sintra and to submit a report to the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau.

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5835 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR IV.B.76 Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites (United Kingdom) The Secretariat informed the Bureau that it had received a Management Plan for the Stonehenge World Heritage site, prepared under the direction of the Stonehenge World Heritage Site Management Planning Group (comprising national and local organizations) and chaired by an English Heritage Commissioner. ICOMOS congratulated the Government of the United Kingdom for this management plan for what is a very complex site. It recommended that careful evaluation and assessment be undertaken in each stage of the process of implementation. The Delegate of Hungary commended the high quality of the plan and indicated that Hungary was already using this plan as a model.

The Bureau congratulated the Government of the United Kingdom for the preparation of this high-quality management plan and took note of the intention of the Government to follow the recommendation made by ICOMOS.

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5836 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR IV.B.77 Complex of Hué Monuments (Vietnam) The Bureau was informed of the findings of the UNESCO-Vietnam expert team concerning the impact on the World Heritage values of the site caused by the heavy rainfall and floods of October-December 1999, which was the worst flood recorded since 1886. This technical study co-financed from World Heritage Fund’s emergency assistance, noted the gravity of the erosion, particularly along the left bank of the Perfume River, and the urgent need for riverbank consolidation to mitigate the risks of further damage from future floods. The long-term damage of the monuments and houses from humidity and timber decay if left untreated, was also noted by the Bureau.  Several delegates, including Hungary and Zimbabwe, noted the high quality of the crisis management plan and indicated the possibility of using it as a model elsewhere.

The Secretariat distributed to the Bureau members a document containing 19 project proposals (15 for Hué and 4 for Hoi An) for urgent rehabilitation and disaster mitigation activities.  The total amounted to US$ 6 million and was prepared by the UNESCO-Vietnam expert team.  Another project proposal for the establishment of a housing improvement fund for urban heritage conservation prepared by the Caisse des Depôts et Consignation (CDC) of France under the Hue-Lille Metropole Decentralized Cooperation Progamme, established by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre was also included. The Bureau remarked on the exemplary quality of the project proposals and the integrated approach, but requested the official association of ICOMOS, as the advisory body to the Committee, to evaluate the projects and the need for inscription of the site on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

The Bureau noted with deep concern, the report on the gravity of the damage caused to the monuments and the urban heritage of the Hué World Heritage site by the November 1999 floods. The Bureau expressed appreciation for the efficient manner in which the Vietnamese authorities have handled emergency actions to prevent further damage to the site and for their efforts in preparing the project proposals, despite priorities for relief to the inhabitants. The Bureau requested UNESCO, notably its Bureau for Extrabudgetary Funding (BER) to co-operate with the World Heritage Centre in seeking donors for these projects. In view of the damage and the important funding support required to redress the situation and to mitigate risks from future seasonal floods, the Bureau requested ICOMOS to undertake a reactive monitoring mission to prepare a recommendation for the inscription of the site on the List of World Heritage in Danger.   It requested the Secretariat to seek the views of the State Party by 15 September 2000 in this regard. The Representative of ICOMOS agreed to undertake a reactive monitoring mission to the site and to formulate a recommendation for consideration by the Bureau at its twenty-fourth extraordinary session for decision by the World Heritage Committee at its twenty-fourth session in 2000.

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5837 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR IV.B.78 State of conservation The Bureau took note of the information provided in the working document on the state of conservation of the following properties:

NATURAL HERITAGE

Comoe National Park (Côte d’Ivoire)

Caves of the Aggtelek and Slovak Karst (Hungary/Slovakia)

The Delegate of Morocco pointed out that the protection of surface water is important in karst systems.

Kaziranga National Park (India)

Lorentz National Park (Indonesia)

Kamchatka Volcanoes (Russian Federation)

Sinharaja Forest Reserve (Sri Lanka)

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (Uganda) 

CULTURAL HERITAGE

Rock-hewn Churches, Lalibela (Ethiopia)

Vilnius Historic Centre (Lithuania)

City of Cuzco (Peru)

Chavin (Archaeological Site) (Peru)

Lines and Geoglyphs of Nasca and Pampas de Jumana (Peru)

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5838 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR VII.4 Requests for International Assistance NATURAL HERITAGE

Technical Co-operation

 

Guinea - Assessment of the State of Conservation of Mt. Nimba Strict Nature Reserve and Institutional Strengthening of the Centre for Environmental Management of Mt. Nimba - US$ 30,000

The Bureau authorized the Chairperson to approve up to an amount of US$ 30,000 for the request described in WHC-2000/CONF.202/12, subject to the Centre and the State Party co-operating to prepare a detailed budget breakdown and to achieve cost-savings for vehicle repairs, fuel costs, and the final report production.

 

Kenya - Preparation of a Management Plan for Mt. Kenya National Park/Natural Forest - US$ 25,000

The Bureau approved an amount of US$ 25,000 for the request as described in the WHC-2000/CONF.202/12.

 

Kenya - Preparation of a Management Plan for Sibiloi/Central Islands National Parks - US$ 25,300

The Bureau approved an amount of US$ 25,300 for the request, as described in WHC-2000/CONF.202/12.

 

 

NATURAL HERITAGE

Training Assistance

 

Madagascar - Building Capacity for World Heritage Area Planning in Southern Madagascar - US$ 30,000

The Bureau approved US $30,000 as a contribution towards direct costs for the project, as described in WHC-2000/CONF.202/12.

 

Malawi - Capacity Building for Lake Malawi National Park - Recommended approval to Committee

The Bureau recommended approval of US$ 37,094 by the Committee at its twenty-fourth session for the request as described in WHC-2000/CONF.202/12.

 

 

CULTURAL HERITAGE

Technical Co-operation

 

Latvia - Digitizing Works on Computers for all existing utilities networks located in the Old Town of Riga - US$ 27,000

Latvia - Carrying out archaeological and historical investigations in the centre of the Old Town of Riga - US$ 29,579

The Bureau approved US$ 27,000 for the request as described in WHC-2000/CONF.202/12.

 

Turkmenistan - Technical Support for monitoring the principal earthen architectural monuments within Ancient Merv - US$ 30,000

The Bureau approved US$ 30,000 for the request as described in WHC-2000/CONF.202/12, subject to the State Party paying its dues to the World Heritage Fund, and requesting the Centre to co-ordinate the implementation of the activity in close collaboration with the State Party and CRATerre.

 

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/4933 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 BUR VIII.C.1 The Wooden Churches of Maramures (Romania) Property: The Wooden Churches of Maramures

Id. N°: 904

State Party: Romania

Criteria: C (iv)

The Committee inscribed the site on the World Heritage List on the basis of criterion (iv):

Criterion (iv): The Maramures wooden churches are outstanding examples of vernacular religious wooden architecture resulting from the interchange of Orthodox religious traditions with Gothic influences in a specific vernacular interpretation of timber construction traditions, showing a high level of artistic maturity and craft skills.

It was noted that neighbouring States Parties could consider proposing to add other wooden churches to this inscription.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2629 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 26 Jun 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM II.1 Adoption of the Agenda and Timetable

II.1 The Committee adopted the Provisional Agenda and Timetable (WHC-99/CONF.204/1 Rev.10) without any modifications.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2350 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM III.1-3 Election of the Chairperson, Rapporteur and Vice-Chairpersons III.1 Proposed by the Delegate of Hungary, and endorsed by Canada, Thailand and Benin, Mr Peter King (Australia) was elected as Chairperson by acclamation. The following members of the Committee were elected as Vice-Chairpersons by acclamation: Canada, Ecuador, Finland, Morocco and Thailand. Mr. Dawson Munjeri (Zimbabwe) was elected as Rapporteur.

III.2 The Committee warmly thanked the out-going Chairperson, Mr Abdelaziz Touri for the excellent leadership he provided the Committee during the past year which had resulted in closer working relations between the Committee and the Secretariat.

III.3 The newly-elected Chairperson, Mr Peter King, expressed his appreciation for the remarkable manner in which Mr Touri carried out his functions as Chairperson of the Committee. He pointed out that this had resulted in several important initiatives taken during his tenure of office and thanked all Committee members for electing him into office. Mr King further highlighted regional initiatives and concluded by stating his commitment to a new partnership in the World Heritage movement and to finding new ways of encouraging practical support for heritage conservation. (His speech is attached as Annex VI).

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2351 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VI Cairns Decisions - Work of The World Heritage Reform Groups VI.1 The Committee noted the reports of the following four reform groups and sincerely thanked the States Parties who had participated in their work.

Task Force on the implementation of the Convention
Chair: C. Cameron (Canada)
Rapporteur: K. Keeffe (Australia)
WHC-2000/CONF.2000/INF. 7

Working Group on the Representativity of the World Heritage List
Chair: H.E. Ambassador Mr Olabiyi B.J. Yai (Benin)
Rapporteur: H.E. Mr M. Peek (Australia)
WHC-2000/CONF.2000/INF. 8

Working Group on Equitable Representation in the World Heritage Committee
Chair: H.E. Ambassador J. Musitelli (France)
Rapporteur: D. Masek (Czech Republic)
WHC-2000/CONF.2000/INF.9

International Expert Meeting on the Revision of the Operational Guidelines, Canterbury, United Kingdom (10-14 April 2000)
Chair: C. Young (United Kingdom)
Rapporteur: K. Kovacs (United States of America)
WHC-2000/CONF.2000/INF.10

VI.2 In view of the large number of detailed recommendations prepared by the four groups listed above, and given that there was limited time for discussion, the Committee focused its discussions on the reform process by examining four specific issues as follows:

1. PROPOSED REFORM OF THE CALENDAR AND CYCLE OF WORLD HERITAGE STATUTORY MEETINGS AND FEASIBILITY STUDY OF THE PROPOSED SYSTEM OF SUB-COMMITTEES

The Committee recalled that the Task Force for the Implementation of the Convention, chaired by Ms Christina Cameron (Canada), had proposed that sub-committees be established to facilitate the work of the World Heritage Committee and the World Heritage Centre.

The Committee also recalled that the twenty-fourth session of the Bureau (June 2000) had requested that there be further examination of the possibility of a sub-committee system and that the Special Session of the Bureau (Budapest, 2-4 October 2000) had discussed the proposal further with reference to a paper prepared by the United Kingdom.

As requested by the Special Session of the Bureau, a paper on the feasibility and implications of a sub-committee system was prepared and examined by the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau (WHC-2000/CONF.203/6).

The four objectives for proposing changes to the existing Bureau and Committee system were to:

Objective 1 Facilitate the work of the World Heritage Centre,
Objective 2 Facilitate the work of the World Heritage Committee and allow it to devote more time to general policy discussions for the implementation of the Convention,
Objective 3 Improve the prior examination of various issues submitted to the Committee, and
Objective 4 Increase representation of States Parties in the work of the Committee.

The Committee decided to

  • Revise the calendar and cycle of World Heritage meetings from June/November to April/June (see Annex VIII)
  • Abolish the extraordinary sessions of the Bureau and Committee
  • Implement changes to the calendar and cycle of the Bureau and the Committee in 2002 (Note: Hungary, who hopes to be host country to the Committee in 2002, expressed their agreement to this date for the introduction of a new calendar and cycle)
  • Introduce an Item A and B decision-making system (Item A: items which are the subject of consensus for adoption and, Item B: items requiring discussion by the Committee)
  • Enforce Rule 22.2 of Committee's Rules of Procedure to limit the time allowed to each speaker (especially if they are an observer)
  • Defer the examination of nominations received in 2001 to the year 2003. This deferral would imply only a limited pause (7 months) in the nomination process, and allow the necessary transitional adjustments
  • Introduce a biennial budget for the World Heritage Fund to harmonize with the UNESCO budget cycle
  • Review any changes to the calendar, cycle and meetings of the Bureau (or sub-committees) and the Committee after they have been in operation for 4 years

The revised deadline for nominations would be 1 February. Evaluations would be due from IUCN and/or ICOMOS 6 weeks prior to the April Bureau.

Referrals of nominations would be re-examined by the Bureau in the year following initial examination before proceeding to the Committee for decision.

The deadline for receipt of international assistance requests and state of conservation reports would also be on 1 February.

During the transition period the following timetable would apply:

Nominations received byTo be examined by the BureauTo be examined by the Committee
1 July 2000 June/July 2001 December 2001
31 December 20001 April 2002 June 2002
1 February 2002 April 2003 June 2003
1 February 2003 April 2004 June 2004

The Committee decided to defer a decision on the introduction of a sub-committee system or the extension of the Bureau session from six to eight days, until the effectiveness of the other reforms (changed statutory meeting calendar and cycle, limitation in number of nominations to be examined each year and reforms to meeting documentation) could be assessed at a later date. It was thus agreed that reform should proceed gradually. Greater efforts were to be given to structuring the work of the Bureau to focus its work. The ordering of the agenda by topics was considered useful as was the use of informal ad hoc working groups to expedite the work of the Bureau and Committee.

The Delegate of Hungary presented a document distributed to the Committee entitled "A Hungarian World Heritage Vision". The document refers to the need to address the balance of representation of the World Heritage List in favour of under- represented or non-represented countries. It also calls for a more prominent role for tentative lists. The Delegate of Hungary suggested that with a pause in the examination of nominations in 2002, the twenty-sixth session of the Committee in 2002 could concentrate on the preparation of a Strategic Plan and other issues important for the future implementation of the Convention.

Documentation

The Committee noted that the Task Force on the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention had recommended a number of reforms to the documents prepared for World Heritage statutory meetings.

Following a presentation by the Director of the World Heritage Centre, the Committee agreed that the objectives of reforming meeting documentation would be to:

  • facilitate decision-making and increase efficiency
  • streamline document preparation
  • provide transparency and equity of access to documentation
  • reduce costs.

The Committee decided that reform of the system of documentation, as proposed by the Director of the World Heritage Centre, would include:

  • maintaining Reports of the Rapporteurs
  • reducing the number of working documents by compiling one decision-making guide to be distributed 2 weeks prior to the meeting
  • including additional working documents only in exceptional cases - e.g. Strategic Planning documents, or changes to Reference Texts (Operational Guidelines, Rules of Procedure etc.)
  • all other documents as Information Documents.

To enhance communication between the World Heritage Centre and the Committee, the Committee also decided, as proposed by the Director of the World Heritage Centre, that the Centre would,

  • prepare a regular report referencing documents currently available
  • organize two information meetings per year for Committee members at UNESCO Headquarters (non-Committee members to attend as observers)
  • continue to prepare a Secretariat Report to the Bureau and Committee but improve its structure and content.

The Committee requested the World Heritage Centre to implement as many of these reforms as are feasible before the twenty-fifth session of the Committee.

2. EQUITABLE REPRESENTATION IN THE WORLD HERITAGE COMMITTEE

The Committee recalled that in October 1999 the twelfth General Assembly,

  • adopted by consensus a Resolution underlining the importance of an equitable representation of the World Heritage Committee and the need to increase the number of its members
  • requested the World Heritage Committee to submit proposals on this matter to the thirteenth General Assembly of States Parties and to inscribe an item on the agenda of the thirty-first General Conference in 2001.

The Committee noted that in 2000, a Working Group on Equitable Representation within the World Heritage Committee was established under the Chairmanship of H.E. Ambassador J. Musitelli (France). The report of the Working Group was discussed at the June and October 2000 sessions of the Bureau (WHC-2000/CONF.204/INF.9).

The Committee noted the proposals on the equitable representation of the Committee developed following the Special Session of the Bureau session (WHC-2000/CONF.204/6) and decided to recommend the following Draft Resolution for adoption by the 13th General Assembly:

The General Assembly of States Parties to the Convention concerning the protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage,

Recalling Article 8, paragraph 2, of the Convention which stipulates that "Election of members of the Committee shall ensure an equitable representation of the different regions and cultures of the world";

Recalling Article 9 of the Convention which stipulates that "The term of office of States members of the World Heritage Committee shall extend from the end of the ordinary session of the General Conference during which they are elected until the end of its third subsequent ordinary session";

Recalling the Resolution of the 7th General Assembly of States Parties (1989);

Considering the representivity of the World Heritage List could be enhanced through the increased participation in the work of the Committee of States Parties whose heritage is currently unrepresented in the List;

Considering that the strong interest of States Parties in participating in the work of the World Heritage Committee could be addressed by a more frequent rotation of Committee members;

Invites the States Parties to the World Heritage Convention, to voluntarily reduce their term of office from six to four years;

Encourages States Parties that are not members of the Committee to make use of their right to participate in meetings of the World Heritage Committee as observers;

Discourages States Parties from seeking consecutive terms of office in the World Heritage Committee;

Decides that before each election of Committee members, the President of the General Assembly of States Parties will inform States Parties of the situation of the representation of regions and cultures in the World Heritage Committee and World Heritage List;

Decides to amend its Rules of Procedure as follows:

New Rule to be inserted after Rule 13.1

A certain number of seats may be reserved for State Parties who do not have sites on the World Heritage List, upon decision of the World Heritage Committee at the session that precedes the General Assembly. Such a ballot for reserved seats would precede the open ballot for the remaining seats to be filled. Unsuccessful candidates in the reserved ballot would be eligible to stand in the open ballot.

Amendment to existing Rule 13.8 (new text in bold)

13.8 Those States obtaining in the first ballot the required majority shall be elected, unless the number of States obtaining that majority is greater than the number of seats to be filled. In that case, the States obtaining the greatest number of votes, up to the number of seats to be filled, shall be declared elected. If the number of States obtaining the majority required is less than the number of seats to be filled, there shall be a second ballot, followed by a third and, if necessary a fourth, to fill the remaining seats. If the number of States obtaining the majority required is less than the number of seats to be filled, there shall be a second ballot. If the number of States obtaining the majority required is still less than the number of seats to be filled there shall be a third and, if necessary a fourth ballot, to fill the remaining seats. For the third and fourth ballots, the voting shall be restricted to the States obtaining the greatest number of votes in the previous ballot, up to a number twice that of the seats remaining to be filled.

Decides that this resolution should be implemented immediately.

The Committee also recommended that the General Assembly organize the agenda of its thirteenth session so that the measures foreseen by these amendments may enter into force at that same session.

In order to implement the new rule to be inserted following Rule 13.1, the Committee decided that one seat be reserved for a State Party not having a site inscribed on the World Heritage List at the date of the thirteenth session of the General Assembly.

The Committee requested the Secretariat to inform all States Parties of the implementation of the new electoral procedures, particularly those States Parties which may fulfill the conditions to be candidates for the reserved seat.

The Committee requested the Secretariat to prepare with the involvement of interested States Parties and the advisory bodies, a proposal for the twenty-sixth session of the World Heritage Committee for further amendment to Rule 13 of the Rules of Procedures of the General Assembly relating to the election of members of the World Heritage Committee in order to ensure an equitable representation of the different regions and cultures of the world. This proposal is to be based on a thorough analysis of the consequences of the proposed changes and the adjustments that would be required to the election procedures.

The Committee also decided to revise the Rules of Procedure of the World Heritage Committee as follows:

New Rule 4.3

"In determining the place of the next session, the Committee shall give due regard to the need to ensure an equitable rotation among the different regions and cultures of the world."

New Rule 20.4

"In appointing consultative bodies, due regard shall be given to the need to ensure an equitable representation of the different regions and cultures of the world."

New Rule 21.3

"In appointing subsidiary bodies, due regard shall be given to the need to ensure an equitable representation of the different regions and cultures of the world."

3. REPRESENTIVITY OF THE WORLD HERITAGE LIST

The Committee examined and discussed the recommendations of the Working Group on the Representivity of the World Heritage List chaired by Ambassador Yai (Benin), which had been transmitted by the Special Session of the Bureau with some changes.

The Committee recognized that the issue of representivity of the World Heritage List was the most difficult of the reform issues under consideration by the Committee. The Committee noted that more effective use of tentative lists and greater regulation of the ever-increasing number of nominations was required. It was agreed that other measures, such as assistance for capacity-building would be vital for ensuring the representation of sites from all regions on the World Heritage List.

The Committee therefore agreed on a decision presented in 5 sections:

  1. Respecting the Convention
  2. Tentative Lists
  3. Nominations
  4. Resolution of the Twelfth General Assembly, 1999
  5. Capacity Building for under-represented Regions

With reference to Section 3, the Delegate of Hungary asked that his request for a change in the deadline for submission of nominations to be examined in 2002, from December 2000 as agreed by the Committee, to April 2001, be noted in the Report. The Committee agreed to note this request by the Delegate of Hungary but stated that in the interest of a smooth transition, the majority position of the Committee will be maintained.

With the exception of Hungary, the text of the decision was adopted by all members of the Committee. A letter from the Italian Government is included as Annex IX of this report.

The Committee agreed to transmit its decision to the Thirteenth General Assembly of States Parties in 2001.

1. Respecting the Convention

The Committee reaffirmed the Convention for the Protection of the World Natural and Cultural Heritage as an instrument of consensus, cooperation and accord between States Parties and takes particular note of Articles 6 (1) and 6 (2) and Article 11 (1):

(i) Whilst fully respecting the sovereignty of the States on whose territory the cultural and natural heritage mentioned in Articles 1 and 2 is situated, and without prejudice to property right provided by national legislation, the States Parties to this Convention recognize that such heritage constitutes a world heritage for whose protection it is the duty of the international community as a whole to co-operate (Article 6 (1)

(ii) The States Parties undertake, in accordance with the provisions of this Convention, to give their help in the identification, protection, conservation and presentation of the cultural and natural heritage . . . if the States on whose territory it is situated so request (Article 6 (2)).

(iii) Every State Party to this Convention shall, in so far as possible, submit to the World Heritage Committee an inventory of property forming part of the cultural and natural heritage, situated in its territory and suitable for inclusion in the list . . . (Article 11 (1).

Decisive cooperative action is required by the Committee and States Parties to ensure that the World Heritage List is fully representative of the world's natural and cultural heritage.

2. Tentative Lists

(i) In the future, consistent with Article 11, .the tentative lists of cultural and natural sites should be used, as a planning tool to reduce the imbalances in the World Heritage List. States Parties are reminded of the invitation to submit tentative lists in conformity with Article 11 of the Convention. The Committee should revise paragraphs 7 and 8 of the Operational Guidelines to extend to natural sites its decision not to examine nominations of sites for inscription if the property does not appear on a tentative list.

(ii) The advisory bodies and the World Heritage Centre should proceed with an analysis of sites inscribed on the World Heritage List and the tentative list on a regional, chronological, geographical and thematic basis. This analysis should be undertaken as soon as possible, taking into account the workload on advisory bodies and the financial implications of this work, particularly in regard to the large number of sites on the tentative list. For this reason, the work should be undertaken in two parts, sites inscribed on the World Heritage List and sites on the tentative list. The analysis will provide States Parties with a clear overview of the present situation, and likely trends in the short to medium term with a view to identifying under-represented categories.

(iii) The advisory bodies should take into account in their analyses:

  • The diversity and particularities of natural and cultural heritage in each region,
  • The results of regional Periodic Reporting, and
  • The recommendations of the regional and thematic meetings on the harmonisation of tentative lists held since 1984 and those on the Global Strategy organised since 1994.

(iv) The World Heritage Centre and advisory bodies should communicate the results of the analyses to the World Heritage Committee and, following the Committee's examination, the results should be conveyed to States Parties to the Convention, together with the Committee's recommendations. This will allow them to prepare, revise and/or harmonise their tentative list, taking into account, where appropriate, regional considerations, and to take the results of the analyses into consideration for the submission of future nominations.

(v) The results of the analyses should be communicated no later than 30 September 2001.

3. Nominations

In order to promote the effective management of the increasing size of the World Heritage List, the Committee at each ordinary session will set the maximum number of nominations to be considered. In the first instance and on an interim basis, it is proposed that at the twenty-seventh session of the Committee in 2003, the number of nominations examined by the Committee will be limited to a maximum of 30 new sites.

In order to determine which sites should be given priority for consideration, all nominations to be considered at the twenty- seventh session of the Committee must be received in full by the new due date of 1 February 2002 agreed by the Committee as part of the change of cycle of meetings. No State Parties should submit more than one nomination, except those States Parties that have no sites inscribed on the World Heritage List who will have the opportunity to propose two or three nominations.

In order to address the issue of representivity of the List the following criteria will be applied in order of priority:2

In the event that the number of nominations received exceeds the maximum number set by the Committee, the following priority system will be applied each year by the World Heritage Centre before nominations are transmitted to the advisory bodies for evaluation, in determining which sites should be taken forward for consideration:

  1. Nominations of sites submitted by a State Party with no sites inscribed on the List;3
  2. Nominations of sites from any State Party that illustrate un-represented or less represented categories of natural and cultural properties, as determined by analyses prepared by the Secretariat and the Advisory Bodies and reviewed and approved by the Committee;
  3. Other nominations.

When applying this priority system, date of receipt of full and complete nominations by the World Heritage Centre shall be used as the secondary determining factor within the category where the number of nominations established by the Committee is reached.

In addition to the approved maximum number of sites, the Committee will also consider nominations deferred, or referred, from previous meetings and changes to the boundaries of already inscribed properties. The Committee may also decide to consider, on an emergency basis, situations falling under paragraph 67 of the Operational Guidelines.
 

Transition arrangements

Committee meeting, December 2001

No change to existing system.

Committee meeting June 2002

Full and complete nominations received by the World Heritage Centre prior to 31 December 2000 will be considered together with nominations deferred, or referred, from previous meetings and changes to the boundaries of already inscribed properties. The Committee may also decide to consider, on an emergency basis, situations falling under paragraph 67 of the Operational Guidelines.

Committee meeting June 2003

Nominations to be submitted by 1 February 2002 and prioritized in accordance with the system as described above.

Review

The system described above is to be reviewed by the Committee after two full years of operation.

4. Resolution of the Twelfth General Assembly, 1999

The Committee decided to call on States Parties concerned to inform the Committee with a minimum of delay, of measures taken in the implementation of the clauses of the Resolution adopted by the Twelfth General Assembly (Paragraph B) that invites all States Parties that already have a substantial number of sites inscribed on the World Heritage List to:

(i) Apply paragraph 6 (vii) of the Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention:

  1. by spacing voluntarily their nominations according to conditions that they will define, and/or
  2. by proposing only properties falling into categories still under-represented, and/or
  3. by linking each of their nominations with a nomination presented by a State Party whose heritage is under- represented, or
  4. by deciding, on a voluntary basis, to suspend the presentation of new nominations.

ii) Initiate and encourage bilateral and multilateral co-operation with States Parties whose heritage is still under-represented in the List within the framework of the preparation of tentative lists, nominations and training programmes,

iii) Give priority to the re-examination of their tentative lists within the framework of regional consultations and to the preparation of periodic reports.

5. Capacity Building for Under-represented Regions

The Committee decided that cooperative efforts in capacity-building and training are necessary to ensure that the World Heritage List is fully representative and agrees that:

(i) The World Heritage Centre should continue to promote training programmes, preferably at the regional level, aimed at allowing States Parties whose heritage is still under-represented to be better versed in the Convention and to better implement the measures under Article 5. These primarily concern the identification, management, protection, enhancement and conservation of heritage. Such programmes should also assist States Parties to acquire and/or consolidate their expertise, in the preparation and harmonisation of their tentative lists and the preparation of nominations.

(ii) The advisory bodies and the World Heritage Centre should use the opportunity of evaluation missions to hold regional training workshops to assist under-represented States in the methods of preparation of their tentative list and nominations. Appropriate financial and human resources should be provided through the World Heritage Centre budget process to undertake such workshops.

(iii) Requests by States Parties whose heritage is non- represented or under-represented should be given a high priority when the portion of the World Heritage budget relating to Preparatory Assistance in preparing nominations is developed.

(iv) The order of priorities for the granting of international assistance, as defined in paragraphs 91 and 113-114 of the Operational Guidelines, should be revised in a manner consistent with the recommendations of the International Expert Meeting on the Revision of the Operational Guidelines (Canterbury, United Kingdom) to improve the representivity of the World Heritage List and to be coherent with the Global Strategy. Beyond the conditions provided for by the Convention, and subject to the conclusions of the evaluation of international assistance, the new priority order should take into account:

  • The necessity of encouraging the beneficiary countries to develop measures for the implementation of the Convention in their country,
  • The order of priority for the examination of the nominations for inscription,
  • The state of preparation of the beneficiary countries, and
  • The necessity of giving priority to the least developed countries (LDCs) and countries with a low revenue.

(v) Regional Plans of Action should be updated and developed within the framework of the Global Strategy. These should specify for each targeted region and State Party, the objective, action needed, responsibility, timetable for adoption, state of play and a mechanism to report on progress in implementing these at each session of the World Heritage Committee. In order to underline their incentive nature, the Plans of Action should highlight the actions by the States Parties concerned, notably in application of Article 5 of the Convention, and should mention the bilateral or multilateral co-operation programmes in the field of heritage in general, for the elaboration in particular of nominations.

(vi) The next UNESCO Medium-Term Strategy should stress the necessity of adopting an intersectoral policy aimed at better implementing the Convention. From the 2002-2003 biennium, an intersectoral project should be developed and implemented to encourage the States Parties whose heritage is still under- represented to reinforce their capacity to protect, conserve and enhance it.

The Committee noted that the Hungarian authorities had prepared a proposal for the establishment of a Heritage Partnership Programme to be examined by the Committee at its twenty-fourth session in Cairns (WHC-2000/CONF.204/19).

The Committee decided that a review of the implementation and effectiveness of such measures should take place not later than 2003.

4. PROPOSED REVISIONS TO THE OPERATIONAL GUIDELINES

The Director of the World Heritage Centre thanked English Heritage and the Government of the United Kingdom for having organized, jointly with the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, the International Expert Meeting on the Revision to the Operational Guidelines in Canterbury, England, from 10 to 14 April, 2000. He also thanked the Government of the United Kingdom for having offered to provide an additional financial contribution to this important activity in 2001.

Following a report on the results of the Expert Meeting by Christopher Young (United Kingdom), who had chaired the meeting, the Committee decided that the Operational Guidelines be restructured according to the proposed new overall framework (WHC-2000/CONF.204/INF.10).

  1. INTRODUCTION
  2. ESTABLISHMENT OF THE WORLD HERITAGE LIST
  3. PROTECTION AND CONSERVATION OF WORLD HERITAGE PROPERTIES
  4. INTERNATIONAL ASSISTANCE
  5. ACTIVITIES IN SUPPORT OF THE WORLD HERITAGE CONVENTION

The Committee requested that the Operational Guidelines be simplified, streamlined and presented in a user-friendly form with most of the existing and new supporting material to be moved to annexes and other documentation. The Committee asked that the Operational Guidelines be organized in a logical way, returning to the fundamental principles of the World Heritage Convention. The revised Operational Guidelines will introduce for the first time a consolidated section on the Protection and Conservation of World Heritage Properties.

IUCN welcomed the excellent work done at the Canterbury Expert Meeting to propose a reshaping of the Operational Guidelines. IUCN agreed that a comprehensive overhaul of this key document was required rather than the past practice of incremental, ad hoc amendments. IUCN expressed their wish to contribute to a process of revisions and proposed five objectives for the revised Operational Guidelines:

  1. The integration of cultural and natural criteria while maintaining the current wording of the natural criteria
  2. The close link between concepts of integrity and authenticity
  3. Stronger emphasis placed on site management
  4. Emphasis on reactive monitoring as nothing does more for the credibility of the Convention
  5. More creative use of tentative lists.

The Committee decided that the process for revising the Operational Guidelines should be co-ordinated by the World Heritage Centre through a collaborative process involving representatives of States Parties, the advisory bodies and the Secretariat. It was agreed that revised Operational Guidelines should reflect different regional and cultural perspectives. The Committee agreed to the following phased approach to the revision of the Operational Guidelines. The Director of the World Heritage Centre noted that additional human and financial resources would be required for the Centre to co-ordinate this process.

Phase I Meeting at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris in January 2001 to define the process for revising the Operational Guidelines
Phase II Preparation by the Secretariat of a first draft revised text in English and French to reflect all current proposals for revision and showing the source of the proposed revisions
Phase III Circulation of the revised text to all States Parties and posting of revised text on the Web
Phase IV Contributions in writing from States Parties
Phase V Meeting to refine new Operational Guidelines, section by section
Phase VI Submission of revised Operational Guidelines to the twenty-fifth session of the World Heritage Committee in 2001 for decision.

____________________

1Full and complete nominations received by the World Heritage Centre prior to 31 December 2000 will be considered together with nominations deferred, or referred, from previous meetings and changes to the boundaries of already inscribed properties. The Committee may also decide to consider, on an emergency basis, situations falling under paragraph 67 of the Operational Guidelines.
 

2 In nominating properties to the List, States Parties are invited to keep in mind the desirability of achieving a reasonable balance between the numbers of cultural heritage and natural heritage properties included in the World Heritage List (Paragraph 15 of the Operational Guidelines)

3 In evaluating these, and all other nominations, the Advisory Bodies should continue to apply a strict evaluation of criteria as set out in the Operational Guidelines.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/1218 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VII.14 Periodic Reporting: Progress report on regional strategies for periodic reporting

VII.14 The Committee approved the regional strategies presented in Annexes I, II, III and IV of Working Document WHC-2000/CONF.204/8. The budgetary implications are considered under item 13 of the Agenda (WHC-2000/CONF.204/15, Chapter IV of the budget).

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2352 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VIII.44-49 World Heritage and Mining VIII.44 The Committee recalled that in accordance with its request at its twenty-third session, IUCN and the World Heritage Centre planned and organised, in consultation with the International Council on Metals and the Environment (ICME), a technical meeting which analysed case studies on World Heritage and mining. This meeting was held at the IUCN Headquarters (Gland, Switzerland) from 21 to 23 September 2000 and reviewed practical case studies from the following sites: Lorentz National Park, Indonesia; Huascaran National Park, Peru; Doñana National Park, Spain; Camp Caiman Gold Project, French Guyana (adjacent to a Ramsar site); Kakadu National Park, Australia; and Greater St. Lucia Wetlands Park, South Africa.

VIII.45 The Committee noted the deliberations of the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the Bureau on this matter included in working document WHC-2000/204/4.

VIII.46 The Observer of the United States stated that the discussions at the Bureau session on mining and World Heritage were helpful. This partially stems from the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) position statement on mining and World Heritage that had been discussed at past meetings of the World Heritage Committee and its Bureau. The Rapporteur's report of the twenty-fourth session cited IUCN's view "that this issue has been characterized by a lack of dialogue between conservation and mining interests". He agreed, and applauded IUCN, ICME and the Centre for holding a technical meeting in Gland (Switzerland), that included representatives of mining and conservation interests. He believed that there remained a need for more dialogue on this issue to resolve outstanding issues. As a result, he requested that the Centre and IUCN consider holding a follow-up workshop on this issue to build on the progress made at the Gland meeting. Finally, he informed the Committee that the US House of Representatives Committee on Resources held a hearing on this subject in October 1999. The report of this hearing is available at http:www.house.gov/resources, listed as document 106-80.

VIII.47 The Delegate of Canada supported the comments by the United States of America and recommended that the proceedings of the workshop be published. Concerning the specific recommendations of the workshop, his country would see the preparation of guidelines on World Heritage and mining and the dissemination of the results of the workshop as a priority. The Delegate of Hungary noted that this issue is a breakthrough in terms of a strategic policy development and requested that progress made in this matter be brought back to the next Committee session and that possibly similar strategic issues, such as World Heritage and tourism be raised.

VIII.48 In summing up the discussion, the Chairperson said that the Committee agreed to the establishment of a Working Group on World Heritage and Mining to carry forward the work in this important field.

VIII.49 The Committee noted the recommendations of the report for transmission to the various key actors. The recommendations of the Workshop are contained in Annex XV.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2414 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VIII.1 Reports of the State of Conservation of Properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger VIII.1 The Committee reviewed document WHC-2000/CONF.204/9 describing state of conservation reports of eighteen natural and five cultural properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2353 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VIII.2 Natural Heritage VIII.2 The Committee was informed that in accordance with the recommendation it made at the last session, the Centre and IUCN had organised a workshop on the "Role of World Heritage Danger Listing in Promoting International Co-operation for the Conservation of World Natural Heritage" on 6 and 7 October 2000 in Amman, Jordan, at the time of IUCN's Second World Conservation Congress. As requested by the participants of that Workshop, the Committee noted the seven priority recommendations included in WHC-2000/CONF.204/9 and suggested that the Centre consider incorporating them as appropriate in revisions to the Operational Guidelines. The Committee requested the Centre and IUCN to consult with States Parties and other suitable partners to study the feasibility of implementing the priority recommendations and submit a report to the twenty-fifth session of the Committee in 2001.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2354 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VIII.3 Iguacu National Park (Brazil) VIII.3 Iguacu National Park (Brazil)

The Committee noted that an oil spill that occurred 600 km from the site did not have any major impact on the site. The Committee recognised that the illegal opening and the use of the Colon Road is the most immediate threat to the site and learned that IBAMA has allocated the equivalent of US $560,000 to support action related to the closure of the road and to restore areas affected by road construction. The Committee was informed that the Brazilian participant at the workshop held in Amman, Jordan had informed the Centre and IUCN of other potential threats posed by expanding agricultural lands outside of the northeastern sectors of the Park that would require systematic monitoring. The Committee commended the State Party for its persistence in strictly enforcing the Federal legal decision to close the Colon Road and urged the State Party to communicate the reasons for the closure of the road to the wider public and take all necessary actions to restore the World Heritage area affected by road construction activities. The Committee invited the State Party to report to the Centre, before 15 April 2001, on progress to ensure effective closure of the Colon Road and rehabilitate impacted areas. The State Party was also requested to provide an up-date on the results of monitoring the impacts of the oil spill that occurred in July 2000. The Committee retained the site in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2355 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VIII.4 Srebarna Nature Reserve (Bulgaria) VIII.4 Srebarna Nature Reserve (Bulgaria)

The Committee was informed that the Minister of Environment and Water, by a letter dated 11 September 2000, has transmitted a state of conservation report to the Centre. The report reached the Centre only on 17 November 2000 and hence allowed only a preliminary desk-review by IUCN. The report describes changes in physical (e.g. water quality) and biodiversity indicators that show improvements in the state of conservation of the site. It outlines measures taken by the State Party to strengthen social, cultural and political support for the protection of the site, including regional and international arrangements made to co-ordinate the overall protection of wetlands in the Danube River basin. The report stresses the fact that the improvements registered in the state of conservation of the site, including the administrative and organizational arrangements put in place to sustain those improvements, justify the removal of Srebarna from the List of World Heritage in Danger by the twenty-fourth session of the Committee. However, IUCN, while noting the positive achievements in the state of conservation reported, suggested that the Committee defer its consideration of the removal of Srebarna from the List of World Heritage in Danger until a site visit is undertaken to assess the results of the rehabilitation efforts reported by the State Party. The Committee thanked and commended the State Party for submitting a comprehensive report and for its efforts to fully rehabilitate the site. The Committee requested the Centre and IUCN to co-operate with the Ramsar Convention Secretariat and other suitable partners to field a mission to the site to undertake a thorough evaluation of the successes of the rehabilitation efforts reported and their sustainability. The Committee asked the Centre and IUCN to submit a report to the twenty-fifth session of the Committee in 2001, advising the Committee whether it could remove Srebarna from the List of World Heritage in Danger and of the next steps in preparing a trans-national, multi-country Danube Delta World Heritage area nomination incorporating designated and potential World Heritage areas of the Danube Delta River Basin. The Committee retained the site in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2356 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VIII.5 Manovo-Gounda-St.Floris National Park (Central African Republic (CAR)) VIII.5 Manovo-Gounda-St.Floris National Park (Central African Republic (CAR))

The Committee was informed that a representative of the State Party had presented a paper on the state of conservation of the site at the Amman Workshop held on 6 and 7 October 2000. He had confirmed that poaching, including by armed groups from neighbouring States, was widespread in the area and that an UNESCO/IUCN mission to the site to plan mitigation and rehabilitation measures would be welcome. The UNESCO National Commission of CAR had contacted the Centre and plans to field a mission were underway. The Committee noted opportunities for possible collaboration with a US-based non-governmental organisation, namely the Earth Conservancy.

The Committee thanked the UNESCO National Commission of CAR for facilitating discussions to plan and field a mission to the site and for arrangements to prepare a state of conservation report and a rehabilitation plan. The Committee urged the Centre and IUCN to undertake the mission as early as possible in 2001 with a view to submitting a comprehensive report to the twentyfifth session of the Bureau in 2001. The Committee retained the site in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

 

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http://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/2357 wh-info@unesco.org Mon, 27 Nov 2000 00:00:00 EST
24 COM VIII.6 World Heritage sites of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) VIII.6 World Heritage sites of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)

The Committee noted detailed information on the state of conservation of the five sites in the DRC, i.e. Virunga, Garamba and Kahuzi Biega and Salonga National Parks and the Okapi Wildlife Reserve, reported from pages 2 to 5 of the document WHC-2000/CONF.204/9. Furthermore, the Committee noted the following additional information reported by the Centre:

(1) In addition to the UNOMC, contacts have been established with members of a UN Panel conducting a Probe on Illegal Exploitation of Natural Resources in DRC and located at the UN complex in Nairobi, Kenya. Information on the state of conservation of the five sites will be regularly transmitted to the UN Panel mentioned above for appropriate action;

(2) A Co-ordination Unit for the UNESCO/DRC/UNFUNFIP Project has been operational in Nairobi, Kenya since 10 September 2000, assisted by the services of a consultant and an "ICCN Homologue" seconded by ICCN, Kinshasa. Recruitment of a Project Co-ordinator had been delayed but is likely to finalized before the end of the first quarter of 2001;

(3) A meeting of technical personnel representing the three different governance regimes within the territory of the DRC was convened from 8 to 10 November 2000 in Nairobi, Kenya. The three technical personnel have signed a formal agreement of co-operation that will facilitate the monitoring of the state of conservation of the sites, execution of the UNESCO/DRC/UNF-UNFIP Project, information and material exchange between sites and the organization and conduct of joint activities involving staff from the five sites. Furthermore, the three authorities have also agreed to co-ordinate together movements and career development options for ICCN personnel, despite prevailing administrative and political barriers to such coordination;

(4) Following a meeting on 28 September 2000, the Director-General of UNESCO and the Executive Director of UNEP expressed an interest to lead a high-level mission to the capitals of the three countries (i.e. Kinshasa, Kigali and Kampala) implicated in the war in eastern DRC to meet with the Heads of States and other important personalities and draw their attention to the need to respect international law and strengthen conservation of the all World Heritage sites in the area, and particularly those in eastern DRC. The possibility of fielding such a mission will be further pursued by the Centre in co-operation with relevant partners of UNESCO under the framework of activities for executing the UNESCO/DRC/UNF-UNFIP Project. The three technical authorities located in the three different regions of DRC (see point 3 above) have committed to facilitate such a high-level diplomatic mission to the fullest extent possible, if and when it is fielded.

IUCN underlined the significance and the timeliness of the financial support provided by the UN Foundation to support the work of site personnel and commended the dedication and commitment of the site staff to protect the sites.

The Committee noted with satisfaction that the Centre has established contracts with project partners for payment of salaries, performance related bonuses and medical and food rations to site staff in all of the five World Heritage sites and transfer of funds to benefit site staff are about to begin soon. The UNESCO/DRC/UNF-UNFIP project has set aside funds for the continuation of such payments to site staff over a period of four years; i.e. until October 2004. The Committee also noted with appreciation the support of the Government of Belgium for a project focusing on providing support to local communities in and around the five sites to enable them to contribute towards their protection. The Government of Belgium is expected to provide a sum of US$ 500,000 for the four-year project that is expected to begin in early 2001.

The Centre, based on information received from partners of the UNESCO/DRC/UNF-UNFIP Project and a variety of other sources, informed the Committee that the state of conservation in Garamba and Virunga National Parks was relatively good. In Okapi, recent assistance from military authorities in the region had enabled staff of the Wildlife Reserve to disarm poaching gangs and improve conservation prospects. Salonga, though outside of the war zone and still accessible to ICCN-Kinshasa, is significantly threatened by illegal poaching. The situation in Kahuzi Biega is the most disconcerting, as staff do not have access to nearly 90% of the Park's surface area.

The Committee requested the Centre to further develop its relations and explore optimal ways of liaising with UNOMC and other appropriate bodies, like the UN Panel undertaking a Probe on Illegal Exploitation of Natural Resources in DRC, in order to promote the links between peace-building and World Heritage conservation in DRC and in neighbouring countries. The Committee recommended that the Centre, in co-operation with ICCN and other partners, ensure effective execution of the UNESCO/DRC/UNF-UNFIP project emphasizing and prioritizing project components that strengthen the work of site staff. The Committee urged the Centre to work with relevant administrative and support units of UNESCO to find ways and means to ensure rapid and effective transfer of funds via project partners to on-site beneficiaries who are attempting to protect World Heritage sites in a zone of high security risks. The Committee thanked and welcomed the interest of the Government of Belgium to support a project that would enable local communities to work with site staff to support conservation of the five sites, and urged UNESCO and the Centre to expedite finalisation of negotiations with Belgium to enable early transfer of assistance to local communities resident near the five sites. The Committee decided that all five sites be retained in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

 

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