Committee Decisions

30 COM 7A.4

Garamba National Park (Democratic Republic of the Congo) (N 136)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-06/30.COM/7A,

2. Recalling Decision 29 COM 7A.4, adopted at its 29th session (Durban, 2005),

3. Commends the State Party for having taken urgent measures to improve the state of conservation of the property and the in-situ conservation of the northern white rhino, in particular the conclusion of an agreement with African Parks Foundation for the management of the property;

4. Notes that the property still faces major threats, particularly as a result of armed insurgency in and around the Park;

5. Requests ICCN and APF, in cooperation with the IUCN African Rhino Specialist Group (AfRSG), to conduct the necessary research to establish the viability of the remaining population of the Northern White Rhino in the property before 30 April 2007 and to organize a workshop on the management options for the population, involving all relevant stakeholders, including the World Heritage Centre and IUCN;

6. Urges the State Party to implement immediately the recommendations of the UNESCO/IUCN monitoring mission which could constitute possible benchmarks in order to safeguard the outstanding universal value and integrity of the property, and in the interest of conservation:

a) Ensure the protection of the border between DRC and Sudan within and adjacent to the property;

b) Improve the efficiency of the military brigade posted around the property to secure the Park and adjacent hunting areas by replacing the current brigade by a brigade that went through the reunification and retraining programme and by ensuring they are adequately equipped ;

c) Ensure that the ICCN guard force is properly equipped and, in particular, has adequate arms and ammunition;

d) Undertake in cooperation with the United Nations Organization Mission to DRC (MONUC) a disarmament campaign within the communities living around the property whilst at the same time improving the security situation in the region;

e) Reinforce cooperation with the Government of Sudan to better control incursions of armed groups into DRC and the property;

f) Continue and strengthen anti-poaching efforts, in particular in the southern sector of the Park where the presence of northern white rhino was confirmed by the 2006 survey;

g) Strengthen efforts to improve relations with the local communities surrounding the Park, particularly through developing and implementing a community conservation programme;

h) Take urgent measures to reinforce and reinvigorate the Garamba guard force;

i) Reinstate detailed monitoring of the rhino population in the property through a specialized monitoring team, building on the know-how available in ICCN and AfRSG;

j) Establish a trust fund for the rehabilitation of the DRC World Heritage properties, to which the Government of the DRC committed to contribute at the 2004 UNESCO conference on Heritage in Danger in DRC;

7. Requests the Director General of UNESCO to ask the United Nations Organization Mission in DRC (MONUC) to increase its cooperation with ICCN and APF for the conservation of the property;

8. Requests also the World Heritage Centre to start as soon as possible the implementation of its projects to support the emergency action plan of the property and to set up a community conservation programme for the property as planned in the second phase of its DRC World Heritage biodiversity programme with funding of the Government of Italy;

9. Recommends the Director General of UNESCO to facilitate a high level meeting between the State Party and the Government of Sudan, to discuss the persistent problem of transborder poaching and resource exploitation in the region;

10. Further recommends the World Heritage Centre and IUCN to contact the CITES Secretariat, in order to investigate the trading networks and countries of destination of the rhino horn and ivory poached in Garamba National Park and other DRC World Heritage properties;

11. Calls on international donors to support the efforts of the State Party in order to conserve the property and save the Northern White Rhino from extinction, to promote the development of the concerned region so as to alleviate the extreme poverty of the local communities;

12. Urges the State Party to provide the World Heritage Centre with an updated report before 1 February 2007 on the state of conservation of the property and progress with the implementation of recommendations of the UNESCO/IUCN monitoring mission, for examination by the Committee at its 31st session in 2007;

13. Decides to retain Garamba National Park (Democratic Republic of the Congo) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Documents
PDF Original Decision Document
Context of Decision
PDF WHC-06/30.COM/7A
Themes: Conservation, List of World Heritage in Danger
Focal Point: AFR
Properties: Garamba National Park
Session: 30COM