1.         Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Afghanistan) (C 211rev)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  2002

Criteria  (ii)(iii)(iv)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger    2002-present

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/211/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 2002-2002)
Total amount approved: USD 20,000
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/211/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions


Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Lack of capacity in conservation techniques; Lack of management mechanism (including legislation); Lack of monitoring system; Lack of presentation and interpretation; Lack of human and financial resources; Lack of institution co-ordination; Earthquake; Civil unrest, Looting/Theft.

Additional Details:

Structural instability of the leaning Minaret aggravated by seasonal flooding

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/211/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2004

Following the inscription of the Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam on the World Heritage List in 2002, the Government of Italy financed a US$50,000 Funds-in-Trust project for the elaboration of a management plan for the property. This project also aims to strengthen legal regulations for the protection of the property and enhance local awareness regarding the importance of safeguarding cultural heritage. As part of this project, a UNESCO expert mission was undertaken in January 2004. This mission included representatives from the Ministry of Information and Culture and the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development of Afghanistan.


This mission aimed to carry out a feasibility study for the construction of a road and a bridge at the World Heritage Site of Jam as well as advise the Afghan Government on the best possible option for the preservation of the site, taking into account Afghan national legislation, the World Heritage Convention and the immediate local needs.


The experts assessed, from a technical, archaeological and social point of view, the various possibilities for the construction of the road already proposed by Afghanaid, and the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture.


The mission resulted in a common agreement signed by the three commanders representing the local communities of Jam, the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture, the Afghan Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development, UNOPS, the Head of the Jam Rehabilitation Organization and UNESCO, by which all involved parties acknowledged that:


a)  The problem arising from the construction of the road is not under UNESCO’s responsibility. UNESCO will however recommend to the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture the immediate construction of a footbridge across the Hari River in order to enable villagers access from the Bedam Valley to the Jam Valley;


b)  Priority must be given to the consolidation and restoration of the monument;


c)  The security of UNESCO experts, as well as that of all equipment, needs to be ensured in the district as a whole.


Considering the number of heavy vehicles crossing the Hari River daily, the construction of a simple ford is suggested as a complement to the footbridge. This solution would preserve the property’s visual integrity without calling for further road construction in the vicinity of the Minaret, thus not significantly increasing traffic at the site.


The UNESCO mission observed with satisfaction the presence of several guards responsible for the surveillance of the site and paid by the Afghan Ministry of Interior.

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM


Decision Adopted: 28 COM 15A.21

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Commends the State Party for having reached a compromise solution concerning the road construction in the immediate vicinity of the Minaret of Jam;

2. Requests the State Party to implement the recommendations of the UNESCO mission of February 2004 as follows:

3. Further requests the State Party, with assistance from the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies, to elaborate and finalize a site management plan as well as to strengthen legal protection for the property;

4. Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2005, a report on the progress achieved on the above-mentioned
recommendations for examination by the Committee at its 29th session in 2005;

5. Decides to retain the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decision Adopted: 28 COM 15C.2

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Following examination of state of conservation reports of properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC-04/28.COM/15A Rev),

2. Decides to maintain the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger: