State of Conservation (SOC)
German Nazi Concentration and Extermination Camp (1940-1945) (2000)
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds
International Assistance granted to the property
Total Amount Ap proved:30,000USD
|2000||Experts Meetings for the Strategic Governmental Programme for ...||10,000 USD|
|1998||International Expert Meeting on the Planning and Protection of ...||20,000 USD|
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
- Threat to the integrity of the property (not specified - tobacco factory project?) (issue resolved)
- Issue of the transfer of seven original paintings from the Auschwitz-Birkenau state museum (issue resolved)
Current conservation issues
To date, the requested report has not been received by the Secretariat.
The Secretariat has been informed through different sources that the Polish Minister of the Interior would have lifted a ban on the construction by a private company of a visitors’ centre with a cafeteria and a parking lot close to the Auschwitz concentration camp. Furthermore, the Secretariat was informed that a discotheque was opened outside of the World Heritage site but in a building that was used for slave labour. The Secretariat requested the Polish authorities for a report on these matters, recalling that the World Heritage Committee at its twenty-second session confirmed its support that the implementation of the Declaration Concerning Principles for Implementation of Programme Oswiecimsky continues in a consensual manner among all parties involved.. To date, the requested report has not been received.
Link to the decision
VIII.34 Auschwitz Concentration Camp (Poland)
The Committee examined the state of conservation of the site and noted the information provided by the Secretariat and by the Under-Secretary of State of Poland, responsible for the implementation of the Strategic Governmental Programme for Oswiecim.
The Committee recalled that, at its twenty-third session (Kyoto, 1998), it confirmed its support for the principles laid out in the Declaration of March 1997; this process should continue in a consensual manner among all parties involved. It expressed the belief that no steps should be taken unless consensus had been reached.
The Committee expressed its concern regarding the delay in implementing the Strategic Governmental Programme for Oswiecim and the work of the international group of experts. It urged the Polish authorities to address these issues without further delay.
Concerning the construction projects within the zones related physically or symbolically to the Concentration Camp, the Committee requested the State Party to avoid any action that could compromise reaching consensus between the authorities, institutions and organizations involved and to ensure that the sacred nature of the site and its environment are preserved giving special attention to their integrity.
The Committee reiterated its request to the State Party, previously made during its twenty-fourth session, to submit a progress report on the implementation of the Strategic Governmental Programme for Oswiecim, and requested the State Party to submit this detailed report by 15 April 2001, at the latest, for examination by the twentyfifth session of the Bureau.
Furthermore, the Committee requested the Secretariat to maintain close contacts with the State Party and other parties involved in order to support planning actions and the process for establishing a consensus as indicated in the decision adopted by the Committee at its twenty-third session.
In conclusion, the Committee reiterated the need for the establishment of a buffer zone to be created around the site, as well as a plan for the implementation of development control mechanisms within this newly identified area. It urged the Polish authorities to pay particular attention to this matter and to submit a report on the progress made in the identification of a buffer zone and control mechanism for examination by the twenty-fifth session of theBureau.
The Observer of Israel underlined that the two former Concentration Camps -Auschwitz and Birkenau - approximately 3 kms from each other, are located in two different municipalities - Oswiecim and Birkenau - are managed under different jurisdictions, and that before the creation of a buffer zone, the two locations should be unified. He stressed that the Strategic Governmental Programme for Oswiecim was not the management plan but a plan developed by the town of Oswiecim and that this should be clarified. Furthemore, he declared that he had taken note of the comments from Zimbabwe, Finland and Greece (included in the Report of the Rapporteur). Finally, he underlined that coordination between the International Group of Experts, the State Party and ICOMOS was essential and should be reinforced. In addition, due to the high sensitivity linked to this site, the Observer of Israel specified that representatives of the State Party and of the Jewish community should be involved in the work undertaken by the International Group of Experts.
The Bureau may wish to examine the information that may be available at the time of its session and take the appropriate decision thereupon.
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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”).