World Heritage Centre World Heritage Centre - Committee Decisions 90 en Copyright 2024 UNESCO, World Heritage Centre Wed, 28 Feb 2024 11:54:29 EST UNESCO, World Heritage Centre - Decisions 16 COM III.1-2 Election of Chairperson, Rapporteur and Vice-Chairpersons III.1 The outgoing Chairman, Mr. Azedine Beschaouch, submitted to the members of the Committee a recommendation made by the Bureau at a special meeting held on 6 December 1992, regarding the strictly specific situation evoked by the Observer Mission of the United States of America to UNESCO in its letter of 27 November 1992 to him in his capacity as the Chairman of the Committee. In accordance with this recommendation, the Committee unanimously decided to suspend the application of the dispositions of paragraph 2, Article 14 of the Rules of Procedure, between the sixteenth and seventeenth plenary sessions of the World Heritage Committee (December 1992 to December 1993). The Committee, however, underlined the fact that this decision, taken in a friendly spirit, which has always characterized relations between the members of the Committee, cannot under any circumstances be evoked in the future as a precedent.

III.2 Ms Jennifer Salisbury (United States of America) was elected Chairperson of the Committee by acclamation. Mr. Azedine Beschaouch (Tunisia) was elected Rapporteur, also by acclamation, and the following members of the Committee were elected as Vice-Chairpersons: Brazil, China, Colombia, Germany and Senegal.

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16 COM IV.1 Adoption of the Agenda

IV.1 The Chairperson informed the Committee that the Bureau, at a special meeting held on 6 December 1992 had recommended that the reports on the strategy for the future, requests for international assistance and the situation of the World Heritage Fund, instead of being examined by working groups, be submitted to the members of the Committee under agenda items 7, 12 and 13 respectively. The members of the Committee also decided, in accordance with another recommendation made by the Bureau at its meeting of 6 December 1992, that they will consider the report of the expert group on cultural landscapes under agenda item 14. The Committee adopted the agenda incorporating these amendments.

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16 COM VII.1-3 Presentation of the Evaluation Report on the Implementation of the Convention and the Draft Strategy for the Future VII. 1 The document WHC-92/CONF.2/4 was introduced by Mrs. C Cameron, Chairperson of the Expert Group which was convened in Washington (United States of America) from 22 to 24 June 1992, then in Paris at UNESCO Headquarters, from 27 to 30 October 1992. Mrs. Cameron stressed that on the one hand the group comprised a certain number of experts from different regions of the world, and representatives of ICOMOS, ICCROM and IUCN, and on the other, Bureau members had participated in the work of the Paris meeting. The discussions of the working group were based on the evaluation report for the implementation of the Convention, made by Mr. Beschaouch in 1991, and presented to the Committee as document WHC­92/CONF.002/3, as well as a study prepared by Mr. G. Bolla in 1992.

VII.2 Following in-depth discussions, the Committee adopted, with a certain number of revisions, the conclusions, goals and the recommendations with which they had been presented, as constituting not only a strategy as such, but strategic orientations for the future, aimed at the different actors concerned with the implementation of the Convention, e.g. the States Parties, the World Heritage Committee, the advisory organizations and the UNESCO World Heritage Centre.

VII.3 These strategic orientations are presented as Annex II to the present report. The Committee requested the World Heritage Centre to send them to all States Parties to the Convention. The Committee also requested the World Heritage Centre, with the assistance of the UNESCO Legal Office, to prepare draft revisions to the Guidelines for the implementation of the Convention reflecting its decisions, and to send them to all Committee members before the end of March 1993. These draft revisions of the Guidelines should more particularly take into account the proposal presented by United States of America as well as by Italy. These draft revisions will be submitted to the Bureau of the Committee at its seventeenth session for review.

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16 COM VIII SOC: El Jem (Tunisia) El Jem (Tunisia)

Regarding the site of El Jem (Tunisia), the Committee was informed of the measures taken at the highest level of Government, as the President of the Republic of Tunisia had transmitted through, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in response to the concerns of the Bureau, the decisions pertaining to a halt in the construction of any extension to the shopping arcade and to the ban on construction of any permanent structures within the amphitheatre. Concerning this point, the Delegate from Tunisia took the floor to thank the Committee for its interest in heritage at large and to the site of El Jem. From now on, new constructions are prohibited by order of the President within a radius of 100 meters around the amphitheatre. Furthermore, the Committee requested the Centre to write to the President of the Republic to thank him for his intervention for the safeguard of the national heritage.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Olympic National Park (United States of America) Olympic National Park (United States of America)

At its last session the Committee was informed by the Delegate of the United States of America of an oil spill off the coast of this World Heritage site. As requested by the Committee at its last session, the US Delegate submitted to the Committee a description of the plan and organization of the emergency response mechanism used to mitigate the negative impacts of the oil spill and a proposed study to make an inventory and monitor affected coastal areas. The Committee was informed that the long-term impacts of the oil spill were unknown. The US Delegate, however, gave assurances that the Committee will be provided with new information regarding these impacts as they become available.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Durmitor National Park (Montenegro) Durmitor National Park (Montenegro)

The Committee noted that the authorities responsible for the management of this site had submitted to the Secretariat several reports on the potential impacts of the proposed construction of a hydroelectric dam on the Tara River and the pollution of that river by a large asphalt plant situated upstream along the river. The Committee was informed that the Montenegro authorities maintained that the two problems mentioned above had minimal impacts on the conservation of Durmitor and that necessary measures to mitigate those impacts were being taken. In accordance with the Bureau recommendation, the Director of this Park has, in accordance with the wish of the Bureau expressed at its last session, invited a joint UNESCO/IUCN mission to this site and has agreed to provide on-site briefing on the status of the dam construction proposal and pollution problems.

The Committee was also concerned about recent reports regarding the threat caused by a dam adjacent to the Tara River which, if breached, could spill large volumes of toxic material into the river. The Committee instructed the Centre to co-operate with the United Nations Protection Forces (UNPROFOR) to organize an international expert mission to this site and to make a report on the threats to its integrity and necessary mitigation measures to the seventeenth session of the Bureau.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Garamba National Park (Zaire) Garamba National Park (Zaire)

The Committee recalled that at its last session, it deferred taking a decision to remove this site from the List of World Heritage in Danger, due to the uncertainties associated with prevailing civil unrest in Zaire at that time.

The Committee was happy to note that the rhinoceros population in the Park has now increased to 32 individuals and that the state of conservation of the site continues to be stable. Hence, the Committee recommended, in accordance with the request made by the State Party by letter of 26 February 1991, to remove this site from the List of World Heritage in Danger.

The Committee also recommended that the Centre suggest that the Zairois authorities

(a) conduct an assessment of the operation of the multi-donor project to date, particularly with regard to institutional arrangements and future directions, and

(b) continue to co-operate with the Committee and other donors in ensuring that the integrity of the Park is further strengthened. The Committee also requested the Centre to transmit its congratulations to the Zairois authorities to have undertaken all necessary measures which made the removal of this site from the List of World Heritage in Danger possible.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Abou Mena (Egypt) Abou Mena (Egypt)

The Committee was apprised of the report presented on the site of Abou Mena following concerns expressed by the Bureau in July 1992. At the request of the Chairperson, the Delegate from Egypt provided all the clarifications regarding allegations on the state of the site in his report, which the Chairperson, upon the suggestion of one of the delegates, requested the Committee to include in the report as an appendix. During the discussion which followed, the Tunisian Delegate asked the Centre to pay special attention to confirming the information received by the Secretariat before bringing it to the attention of the Committee.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Delos and Delphi (Greece) Delos and Delphi (Greece)

The Deputy Director of the World Heritage Centre informed the Committee of the status of the site of Delos, over which the Bureau had expressed some concern in terms of the human resources required for its protection. Following the explanations provided by the Observer from Greece, the Committee took note of the willingness of the Greek authorities to increase the number of guards in spite of the problems involved in attracting employees to an island which is no longer inhabited. On the other hand, concerning the site of Delphi, the Greek Observer reminded the Committee of the protective measures taken as well as the restoration activities coinciding with the one hundredth anniversary of the excavation works of the Ecole Frangaise d'Athenes celebrated in 1992.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Vatican (Holy See) Vatican (Holy See)

The Committee was informed of the various actions undertaken by the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS in collaboration with the Holy See authorities following a certain number of protests concerning a new building on the site of the Hospice of Santa Marta.

The Director of the World Heritage Centre as well as ICOMOS were able to ascertain at the site that the allegations reported mainly by the press were groundless. They commended the spirit of co-operation with which this problem had been approached by the authorities of the Vatican. One delegate congratulated ICOMOS on the quality of his report and raised a point regarding the use of appropriate terminology by the Secretariat in presenting questions to the Bureau or the Committee. The Representative from the Holy See then took the floor to express his satisfaction with the way in which this matter was settled and read a statement which was annexed to the report.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Ggantija Temples (Malta) Ggantija Temples (Malta)

The Deputy Director of the World Heritage Centre brought up the problem of protecting the Megalithic temples of Ggantija and indicated that the report requested of the Maltese authorities on this subject had arrived shortly before the sixteenth session of the Committee. This report shows that the authorities involved have taken the Bureau's concerns into consideration and confirmed the request to extend the site.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Ancient City of Damascus (Syria) Ancient City of Damascus (Syria)

The Deputy Director of the World Heritage Centre reported on the information unofficially transmitted to UNESCO expressing concern over the work being done on the western wall of the Mosque of the Omeyyades in Damascus (Syria). When invited by the Chairperson to provide clarification, the Delegate from Syria retraced the history of the Mosque and confirmed that the work in question is being effected on a wall built about twenty years ago to protect the Mosque's inner courtyard from the rain.

The ensuing discussion emphasized the need for the Centre to have a comprehensive and updated documentation available and for the State Party concerned to specify the type of intervention, which may vary from consolidation, restoration, renovation or reconstruction. One delegate pointed out that the States Parties must understand, when fears are expressed concerning a site or a monument inscribed on the List, that it is the duty of the Committee to follow up, in a spirit of openness and co-operation, by sending a mission to the site. This opinion was seconded by other delegates. One of them expressed the hope that the word "reconstruction" would never appear in the reports of the Committee and that a mission might visit Damascus in 1993 and that a report as detailed as the one devoted to the Vatican be submitted at the next meeting of the Bureau. Taking note of the favourable opinion of the Delegate from Syria, the Committee requested the Centre to send a technical mission in the first quarter of 1993.

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16 COM VIII SOC: City of Bath (United Kingdom) City of Bath (United Kingdom)

The Committee noted with satisfaction the model plan drawn up for the City of Bath. The World Heritage Centre was asked to write to the authorities in the United Kingdom to this effect.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Goreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia (Turkey) Goreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia (Turkey)

The Committee noted with concern the information received on the state of conservation of the site. According to the consultant responsible for evaluation of the site in question, the Turkish authorities and the Ministry of Culture in particular did not seem to be aware of the decisions taken by the Committee in 1985 providing for an extension of the protected area of the Goreme site. According to the consultant's report, this site is undergoing serious changes due mainly to the construction of hotels in the safeguarded sector. After hearing the comments of the delegates emphasizing the gravity of the situation in a site for which UNESCO has issued an appeal for an international safeguard campaign, and after receiving information from ICCROM concerning preparations for a seminar in Goreme in 1993, the Committee asked the World Heritage Centre to write to the Turkish authorities reminding them of its decisions. The Deputy Director of the Centre indicated in this regard that the Turkish authorities had requested assistance from the Centre in setting up a coordinating committee for this site, which comes under the authority of several ministries.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Historic Areas of Istanbul (Turkey) Historic Areas of Istanbul (Turkey)

On the subject of Istanbul, ICOMOS found the information provided by the Turkish authorities to be acceptable. However, it would be desirable for ICOMOS to obtain the accompanying plans of the master safeguard plan, which the Centre might request. Given the importance of Istanbul, which, like Goreme, is the subject of a UNESCO international safeguard campaign, the Committee felt it necessary to send a mission there.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Rila Monastery (Bulgaria) Rila Monastery (Bulgaria)

After the presentation on the Monastery of Rila, the Committee asked the World Heritage Centre to write a letter to the Bulgarian authorities to draw their attention to the necessity for implementing a management plan in co-operation with Church representatives.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Quebec Historic Area (Canada) Quebec Historic Area (Canada)

In response to information conveyed by the press as well as by groups and individuals, the ICOMOS Representative informed the Committee of the task assigned to him by the World Heritage Centre to examine, with the authorities in Quebec, two construction projects (one for the IMAX cinema and one for a naval academy) both on the land located immediately outside the protected area. The ICOMOS report on this matter and the additional explanations given by him gave rise to two statements, the first by the Observer from Canada and the second by the Representative from the City of Quebec. Both of them thanked ICOMOS for the quality of the work carried out and noted that the manner in which this matter was dealt with was proof of the effectiveness of the Convention. The Delegate of Tunisia brought to the attention of the Committee the position in favour of preservation of the historic site publicly expressed by the Mayor of the City of Quebec during the meeting of the Mayors of World Heritage Cities which took place on 23 and 24 November 1992. He recommended to the Committee that it strongly support the proposals contained in the ICOMOS report. The Committee approved this proposal.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Paris, Banks of the Seine (France) Paris, Banks of the Seine (France)

Concern was expressed with regard to the insertion of a new building in the historic setting of the Banks of the Seine in Paris. Based on a visit to the site and a study of the architectural project, an ICOMOS expert, Mr. Barthelemy, made a favourable report on the project which was approved by ICOMOS and of which the Committee took note.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Budapest, the Banks of the Danube (Hungary) Budapest, the Banks of the Danube (Hungary)

After having analyzed the characteristics of the construction project for the French Institute of Culture building in Budapest, the ICOMOS Representative emphasized the doctrinal considerations involved in inserting contemporary architecture in historic quarters, and the necessity to avoid pastiche or "kitch". He proposed that no action should be taken with regard to this project.

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16 COM VIII SOC: Historic Centre of Rome (Italy) Historic Centre of Rome (Italy)

The ICOMOS Representative informed the Committee of the state of the Rome Colisseum which is suffering both from air pollution due to the proximity of a road and from vibrations caused by the subway. At present financial support from the Banco de Roma is enabling conservation work of the monument to ensure its safeguard.

The Delegate of Italy intervened to thank ICOMOS for the scientific information presented to the Committee and which recalled the usual problems dealt with concerning catastrophes, but in this case the problem of the Colisseum is the harmful daily effects on the monument.

However, it will be possible to implement projects to consolidate and protect the stone due to the provision of exceptional financial resources, from the Banco de Roma, and ICOMOS and the Committee will be kept informed of progress. Moreover, prior to any intervention, the Italian authorities have initiated a systematic process to analyze materials, and have set up a scientific committee which will co-operate with ICCROM and ICOMOS.

In addition, the Delegate of Italy stated that, in general, it was necessary to request States Parties to provide periodic information to the World Heritage Centre on interventions anticipated in inscribed properties so as not merely to evaluate a fait accompli but rather to undertake preventive action.

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