Decision : CONF 001 VIII.2
Virunga National Park (Zaire)
The Bureau was deeply concerned to learn that due to recent political uncertainties in the country all donors, except WWF, have withdrawn their support to this Park. This has resulted in destruction of vegetation, poaching, agricultural encroachment and over-exploitation of fish populations in Lake Idi Amin. Since November 1992, the Park staff has not received salaries, and funds for operations and maintenance are not available. Several new settlements have appeared in the Park, particularly around Lake Idi Amin, and some gold mining and livestock grazing have also been reported.
The Bureau was informed that an IUCN/WWF field visit to this World Heritage site is being considered for October 1993 to assess current damage and suggest long-term options for the conservation of the site. The Bureau recommended that the Committee include the Virunga National Park in the List of World Heritage in Danger, unless the proposed IUCN/WWF site visit to in October 1993 provides sufficient evidence to the contrary. The Bureau agreed, in principle, to provide emergency assistance of US$ 20,000 for Virunga National Park which does not constitute a precedent, and subject to the receipt of a formal and acceptable request from the competent national authorities responsible for the management of this property.