The World Heritage Committee has inscribed Ogasawara Islands, the Japanese islands situated some 1,000 km south of the country's main archipelago, on UNESCO's World Heritage List for the wealth of their ecosystems which reflect a wide range of evolutionary processes.

The property numbers more than 30 islands clustered in three groups and covers surface area of 7,939 hectares. The islands offer a variety of landscapes and are home to a wealth of fauna, including the Bonin Flying Fox, a critically endangered bat, and 195 endangered bird species. Four-hundred and forty-one native plant taxa have been documented on the islands whose waters support numerous species of fish, cetaceans and corals. Ogasawara Islands' ecosystems reflect a range of evolutionary processes illustrated through its assemblage of plant species from both southeast and northwest Asia, alongside many endemic species.

A total of 35 nominations, including natural, cultural and mixed properties will have been reviewed by the Committee, which is holding its 35th session at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, by the end of the session on 29 June.

Photographs: UNESCO Media Service
B-rolls: UNESCO Media Service