Committee Decisions

31 COM 7A.4

Virunga National Park (Democratic Republic of the Congo) (N 63)

  The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-07/31.COM/7A,
  2. Recalling Decision 30 COM 7A.7, adopted at its 30th session (Vilnius, 2006),
  3. Expresses its sincerest condolences to the families of guards who were killed during operations related to the protection of the property;
  4. Regrets that the continued insecurity in and around the property continues to hamper conservation activities, leading to limited progress on the implementation of the corrective measures set by the Committee at its 30th session (Vilnius, 2006);
  5. Urges the State Party in cooperation with the United Nations Organization Mission in DRC (MONUC), in view of the extremely negative consequences of the presence of armed groups in and around the park, to urgently take measures to disarm and evacuate the armed groups and to reduce significantly the number of military positions inside the property ;
  6. Also urges the State Party and the protected area agency ICCN to implement as soon as possible the corrective measures set by the Committee at its 30th session (Vilnius, 2006);
  7. Strongly regrets that in spite of promises by the Minister of Defence, the Nyaleke army reunification and training camp inside the property was not closed down and reiterates its request for an immediate closure and removal of the camp from the property;
  8. Expresses its concern about the map produced by the Ministry of Mines, showing that exploratory concessions were granted inside the property, calls on the holders of any concessions to respect international standards with respect to mining in World Heritage properties, as outlined in the International Council on Mining and Metals Position Statement on Mining and Protected Areas (2003), and further urges the State Party to immediately revoke any concessions that might have been granted, as mining operations are incompatible with the World Heritage status of the property;
  9. Requests the State Party, in consultation with the World Heritage Centre and IUCN, to develop a draft Statement of Outstanding Universal Value for the property, including the conditions of integrity, for examination by the Committee at its 32nd session in 2008;
  10. Also requests the State Party, in consultation with the World Heritage Centre and IUCN, to develop a draft statement of the desired state of conservation for the property based on its Outstanding Universal Value;
  11. Further requests the State Party to provide the World Heritage Centre with an updated report by 1 February 2008 on the state of conservation of the property and on progress with the implementation of the corrective measures set by the Committee at its 30th session (Vilnius, 2006) for examination by the Committee at its 32nd session in 2008;
  12. Decides to retain Virunga 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-07/31.COM/7A
Themes: Conservation
Properties: Virunga National Park
Session: 31COM