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World Heritage Convention

Decision 44 COM 7A.6
Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Iraq) (C 1130)

Decision: 44 COM 7A.6

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/21/44.COM/7A.Add,
  2. Recalling Decisions 43 COM 7A.18 and 43 COM 7A.21, adopted at its 43rd session (Baku, 2019),
  3. Taking into account Decision 44 COM 7A.9, on the World Heritage properties of Iraq,
  4. Notes the State Party’s efforts to address risks at the property and to keep the World Heritage Centre informed about the situation at the property, but expresses again its concern about its condition and the lack of comprehensive information on its state of conservation;
  5. Acknowledges the information provided by the State Party concerning the planned construction of Makhool Dam, and deeply regrets that the construction of the dam is again proposed and requests the State Party to relocate or cancel the project in view of its potential impact on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property and other archaeological sites, and in the meantime, to submit the full technical information including a comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment to the World Heritage Centre for technical review;
  6. Reaffirms the potential danger to the OUV of the property arising from the proposed dam, which already justified in 2003 the inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger in accordance with Paragraph 179 (b) of the Operational Guidelines;
  7. Calls upon the State Party to suspend any work towards the dam construction, pending consideration of cancellation or relocation of the project and review of the technical information for the project;
  8. Reiterates its request to the State Party to submit all preliminary assessments of the property it has undertaken, and to carry out a detailed review of the damage incurred outlining the potential risks to the property, prior to taking any action on the ground, and to submit this assessment for review by the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies;
  9. Also requests the State Party to submit a detailed report on all interventions carried out as a matter of priority and also reiterates its previous request that interventions be addressed within the framework of the overall assessment of damage and risks and a comprehensive conservation plan prepared in full consultation with the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies;
  10. Reminds the State Party of its obligation to submit to the World Heritage Centre, for evaluation by the Advisory Bodies, detailed information of any future works that may affect the Outstanding Universal Value of the property, in conformity with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines;
  11. Reiterates the need for a joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission, once conditions permit, to assist in assessing damage at the property, preparatory to the development of a comprehensive conservation plan, the identification of corrective measures, and the development of a Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR);
  12. Reiterates its appeal to all States Parties to cooperate in the fight against the illicit trafficking of cultural heritage coming from Iraq as per the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 2199 of February 2015, 2253 of December 2015 and 2347 of March 2017;
  13. Calls again on all States Parties to support emergency safeguarding measures, including through the UNESCO Heritage Emergency Fund;
  14. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2022, 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 45th session;
  15. Decides to retain Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Iraq) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Decision Code
44 COM 7A.6
States Parties 1
Properties 1
State of conservation reports
2021 Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat)
Decisions adopted at the 44th extended session of the World Heritage Committee
Context of Decision