V.42 The Bureau was informed that since the end of the rebellion in the area, a number of visits to the Reserves have been fielded by the national agency responsible for the management of the site. Local people have regained their confidence and are actively participating in development activities. The Programme of Support for the Management of the Natural Reserves held an extraordinary session of its Pilot Committee on 7 February 2001 and a new phase of project activities is due to be in place before the end of 2001 or early 2002. Danish and Swiss bilateral aid agencies are committed to financing the new phase. The outcome of the donor mission concluded during 9-16 February 2001 is awaited. The GEF Project for the site is also still under negotiation. The Fonds Francais pour l'Environment Mondial (FFEM) is providing financial assistance to the conservation of the Sahelo-saharan antelopes in the framework of the Convention of Migratory Species (CMS) and that assistance will benefit conservation activities in some parts of the Reserves. The population status of addax, gazelles and wild sheep is improving and Reserve staff undertakes regular anti-poaching patrols.
V.43 Unfortunately, the ostrich population appears to have been completely wiped out during the rebellion. US$ 25,000 from the World Heritage Fund to implement the rehabilitation plan will enable the State Party to experiment with an ostrich re-introduction programme. Implementation of other aspects of the rehabilitation programme approved by the Committee in 1999 is also progressing. A new request for US$ 20,000 to organise a workshop for members of the local Committee for the development and the management of the site has also been approved by the Chairperson of the Committee.
V.44 The Bureau recalled the fact that the State Party had informed the last session of the Committee of its wish to complete the implementation of all activities of the rehabilitation programme before inviting the Committee to consider removal of the site from the List of World Heritage in Danger. The Bureau noted with satisfaction the improving conservation status of the Reserves and requested the Centre and IUCN to find ways and means to expedite the design and development of the GEF project for the conservation of the Reserves. The Bureau requested the Centre to transmit the Bureau's appreciation of the efforts of the Danish and Swiss Governments and the FFEM for the conservation of the site and urged those donor States Parties to the Convention to make long-term commitments for the protection of the Reserves. The Bureau recommended that the IUCN/Centre mission to evaluate the outcome of the rehabilitation programme be delayed until 2002 to allow time for the completion of all planned activities to be undertaken as part of the rehabilitation programme.