Following their meeting in UNESCO Headquarters, Paris 3-4 March 2011, a group of Afghan and international experts working on the safeguarding of Bamiyan (Afghanistan), as well as representatives of the Afghan and Japanese governments and UNESCO, released a list of recommendations for further activities to preserve the Bamiyan site. Bamiyan remains one of the most important examples of Gandharan art in the world, despite the Taleban's destruction of its two monumental Buddhas in 2001.
The Expert Working Group was formed in 2002 within the framework of the coordination mandate for all cultural projects in the country entrusted to UNESCO by the Afghan government, and met for the ninth time in March 2011. It coordinates activities carried out under the UNESCO/Japan Funds-in-Trust project "Safeguarding of the Bamiyan site," which aimed to preserve and protect the cultural heritage of the Bamiyan valley. In addition, the group oversees bilateral projects, notably the important financial contribution of the German government for the conservation of fragments of the statues of the Buddhas. The approval of the recommendations by the group marks the end of the successful three year UNESCO/Japan project phase III and determines the future goals of its fourth phase.