State of Conservation (SOC)
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds
International Assistance granted to the property
Total Amount Ap proved:113,595USD
|1998||Hydrological and topographical studies for the Moats of Angkor ...||28,595 USD|
|1994||Consolidation of the Pre Rupt monument in Angkor||50,000 USD|
|1993||Financial contribution for the installation of an alarm system at ...||20,000 USD|
|1992||Mission to prepare a Tentative List and a nomination dossier for ...||15,000 USD|
September 1997: legal expert mission
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
- Inadequate protective legislation;
- Inadequately staffed national protection agency;
- No permanent boundaries established and defined buffer zones;
- Need for monitoring and coordination of the international conservation effort
Current conservation issues
The plenary session of the International Coordination Committee for the Safeguarding and the Development of the Historic Site of Angkor (CIC), for which UNESCO ensures the Secretariat met on 20 June 2000.
1. APSARA activities: In accordance with the impetus given by the co-Chair of the CIC, its permanent Secretariat and the UNESCO Office in Phnom Penh have undertaken several initiatives to ensure total transparency in the management of the income at the Angkor site. The subject was discussed during the plenary session of the CIC in the presence of the representative of the Prime Minister of the Royal Government. The Government made the decision to increase by US$ 500,000, the grant allocated to APSARA and to revise in the near future the clauses of the contract of the private company, license holders for the entrance fees of the Angkor site.
At the request of the President Director General of APSARA, a list of suitable members to form an ad hoc Committee to follow the matter of the transfer of the Siem Reap/Angkor airport was proposed to the Cambodian authorities by UNESCO.
The “Institutional Support to the ASPARA Authority” Programme, implemented and financed by France has begun. It comprises four activities: heritage protection measures; regular maintenance of monuments; combat against looting and illicit traffic of cultural property, and training.
2. Training: The first technical training cycle for conservation specialists of sites and monuments, organized by APSARA with the financial support of Japan and carried out in close cooperation with ICCROM, SPAFA and UNESCO, was completed with excellent results. Twenty qualified young archaeologists, architects and engineers participated in this intensive training exercise. During the last CIC, it was decided to continue this experience. Funding is being sought for the 2000/01 and 2001/02 sessions. Furthermore, in agreement with the CIC, an extensive four-year training programme for Khmer architects and technicians has been launched by the French Government.
3. Illicit traffic: The CIC was informed that, last June, the Prime Minister of Thailand jointly signed with his Cambodian counterpart, a special agreement concerning the joint combat by the two Kingdoms against the looting of Khmer temples, the objects being transited by way of the Thai frontiers. This agreement is the result of UNESCO intervention with the Cambodian Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts to assist in the application of the Heritage Law and to prepare legal and technical files for the return of the stolen objects.
4. International Centre for Scientific and Technical Documentation of Angkor (CID): The CID has enriched its data thanks to the transfer of all the technical reports retained until now by UNESCO Phnom Penh. A bibliographic data bank is being set up with the CDS/ISIS programme. With the support of Japan and in accordance with the APSARA, the UNESCO expert and the ASPARA staff member will continue to work full-time on this programme in 2001 at the CID.
The next technical session of the CID will be held in Siem Reap on 14 and 15 December. It will be preceded by the fifth international symposium on Bayon, organized by the Japanese Governmental Team for the Safeguarding of Angkor, in cooperation with the APSARA and UNESCO (11-12 December). The ad hoc group of international experts on cultural tourism in the region will be held on 11 to 13 December 2000 in Siem Reap, and is organized by the World Tourism Organization with UNESCO participation.
Link to the decision
VIII.17 Angkor (Cambodia)
The Secretariat recalled that this site, inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger at the time of its inscription in 1992, is the largest cultural site in Southeast Asia. It extends over an area of some 400 km2 and includes no less than 100 monuments and hundreds of archaeological features. The socio-economic needs of the inhabitants require integration of conservation and development considerations. Although the armed conflict in the region of Angkor, which prompted its in-danger listing is now over, looting, illicit excavation and traffic in cultural objects and the continued need for large-scale international assistance, have kept this site on the Danger List. It was recalled that the Committee expressed concern at its twenty-third session in 1999, and the Bureau at its twenty-fourth session, regarding the airport extension plan, rapid development of tourism facilities, and uncoordinated public and private works that may undermine the integrity of the site. Responding to the Committee's request for APSARA, the site management authority, and the International Coordinating Committee for Angkor (ICC) to coordinate all conservation and development projects in the region and strengthen national capacity through training, the State Party, through the UNESCO Office in Phnom Penh, provided the information contained in WHC-2000/CONF.204/9 for the attention of the twenty-fourth session of the Committee.
The Delegate of Hungary stated that despite past requests by the Bureau and the Committee for the report of the ICC meetings, these had not been made available. Furthermore, he drew the attention of the Committee to the fact that the report on all on-going and planned projects for conservation, as well as on infrastructure had not been received. He urged the Committee and the advisory bodies to demonstrate more commitment for the safeguarding of this outstanding site. The Secretariat, at the invitation of the Chair, responded that the case of Angkor has been examined by the Bureau and Committee, at every single session since 1992, or no less than 20 times. All requests for international assistance submitted by the State Party have been supported, in addition to multi-year projects being financed through the Culture Sector of UNESCO in the largest operational programme being undertaken by the Organization. As for the advisory bodies, the Committee was informed that ICOMOS participated in the ICC meeting, and both IUCN and ICCROM have had operational presence, including a highly successful well-appreciated training programme (Tanee) recently implemented by ICCROM.
The Committee, after having examined the report on the state of conservation of the site, congratulated the Royal Government of Cambodia for the significant progress made in the field of training thus ensuring the control and maintenance of the monuments and encouraged it to continue in its efforts. The Committee invited the APSARA and UNESCO to strengthen development activities for the collection of documents for the International Centre for Scientific and Technical Documentation of Angkor, which should aim at securing all documentation produced during the safeguarding and development projects of the site. It also encouraged further efforts to develop partnerships with international teams at the site.
Furthermore, the Committee requested additional information on the monitoring of work undertaken on the entrance porch of the central monument and the collapsed tiers of the western moat of the Angkor Vat Temple. The Committee reiterated its earlier request for information concerning tourism development at the site and the development of infrastructure in this respect, with particular reference to the question of the extension of the Siem Reap/Angkor airport. Finally, the Committee decided to retain this property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
“The Committee, after having examined the report on the state of conservation of the site, congratulates the Royal Government of Cambodia for the significant progress made in the field of training thus ensuring the control and maintenance of the monuments and encourages it to continue in its efforts. The Committee invites the APSARA and UNESCO to strengthen development activities for the collection of documents for the International Centre for Scientific and Technical Documentation of Angkor, which should aim at securing all documentation produced during the safeguarding and development projects of the site. It also encourages further efforts to develop partnerships with international teams at the site.
Furthermore, the Committee wishes to obtain additional information on the monitoring of work undertaken on the entrance porch of the central monument and the collapsed tiers of the western moat of the Angkor Vat Temple. It also wishes to be informed about tourism development at the site and the development of infrastructure in this respect, with particular reference to the question of the transfer of the Siem Reap/Angkor airport.”
The Committee could maintain this property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
View inscribed site documents, nomination file, reports, decisions, ...
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Detailed List of SOC reports
Urgent problems of conservation
Inscription on the Danger ListYear: 1992 -2004
Threats to the Site:
Given the unique situation in Cambodia, which, in accordance with the Paris Accords, has been placed under the temporary administration of the United Nations since July 1991, and in order to deal with the urgent problems of conservation quickly and effectively, the Committee has inscribed the site of Angkor on the List of World Heritage in Danger, and has requested, on the recommendation of ICOMOS, that the authorities concerned take the necessary steps to meet the following conditions:
a) enact adequate protective legislation;
b) establish an adequately staffed national protection agency;
c) establish permanent boundaries based on the UNDP project;
d) define meaningful buffer zones;
e) establish monitoring and coordination of the international conservation effort.
The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).