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World Heritage Convention

Decision 45 COM 7A.52
Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Afghanistan) (C 211 rev)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/23/45.COM/7A.Add.3,
  2. Recalling Decisions 43 COM 7A.42 and 44 COM 7A.29 adopted at its 43rd (Baku, 2019) and extended 44th (Fuzhou/online, 2021) sessions respectively,
  3. Expresses its deep concern regarding the current situation in Afghanistan in terms of humanitarian, educational and cultural environments, and the challenges faced by the national and international communities, including the United Nations system, in effectively preserving cultural heritage and implementing technical assistance activities;
  4. Notes with serious concern the continued lack of sustainable human and financial resources and the alarming field situation, which, combined with natural disasters, have brought another layer of difficulties for the implementation of conservation work based upon the 2017 Conservation Action Plan (CAP) and the corrective measures adopted in 2007 by the Committee in Decision 31 COM 7A.20;
  5. Urges the State Party to seek the necessary means to implement the following:
    1. Installation of a monitoring instrument on the Minaret of Jam to measure its inclination,
    2. Emergency stabilization work for the wooden staircases to prevent further destabilization of the minaret’s structure,
    3. Construction of a footbridge over the Hari Rud and the reconstruction of the site office at the property, in order to improve access to the property and site security,
    4. Completion of the emergency cleaning of sediment from the riverbeds and the implementation of preventive measures based on the local hydrogeological conditions and hydraulic engineering studies, including upstream gabion and retaining walls, tree planting, and monitoring of the height and flow of the Hari Rud and Jam Rud rivers,
    5. Permanent deployment of security personnel on the ground;
  6. Recommends that technical assistance, including the assistance provided by the International Alliance for the Protection of Heritage in Conflict Areas (ALIPH), contribute to the implementation of the adopted corrective measures, in particular pursuing additional technical studies, identifying the most urgent and feasible actions in light of the current situation, and, to the extent possible, to benefitting the local communities;
  7. Requests that the draft Conservation Plan elaborated under the ALIPH funded project be revised based on the ICOMOS review to produce an update of the CAP, which should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies;
  8. Regrets that the boundaries of the property and its buffer zone still remain to be precisely defined, and reiterates its request to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2024, a proposal for a Minor Boundary Modification, taking into consideration the topographical map produced in 2012 to facilitate the delineation of these boundaries, in conformity with the CAP and in accordance with Paragraphs 163-164 of the Operational Guidelines;
  9. Also requests the allocation of necessary financial and human resources for the safeguarding of the property through relevant budget in order to address conservation issues at the property, including the proposal for a boundary modification, the establishment of the overall action plan for the CAP as well as capacity-building;
  10. Reaffirms its solidarity with the Afghan people, expresses again its strong commitment to stand together in safeguarding Afghanistan’s heritage, and reiterates its call to all concerned to observe the humanitarian law and international instruments relating to heritage, so that all the diversity of heritage, moveable or immoveable, that constitute an integral part of Afghanistan’s culture can be preserved;
  11. Further requests the international community to provide support to the Afghan people in preserving their heritage and cultural rights;
  12. Requests furthermore the submission to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2024, of an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 46th session;
  13. Decides to retain Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Afghanistan) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Context of Decision