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Samarra Archaeological City

Iraq
Factors affecting the property in 2013*
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • War
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Weathering and lack of maintenance affecting the fragile structures;
  • State of conflict in the country that does not allow the responsible authorities to assure the protection and management of the property.
Threats for which the property was inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger

State of conflict in the country that does not allow the responsible authorities to assure the protection and management of the property.

Corrective Measures for the property

Not yet identified

Timeframe for the implementation of the corrective measures
Not yet established
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2013

Total amount granted: USD 100,000 from the Nordic World Heritage Fund for training and documentation aiming at the preparation of the Nomination File.

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2013
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved : 0 USD
Missions to the property until 2013**

June 2011: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2013

The State Party submitted a state of conservation report on 3 February 2013 in which it provided brief information on ongoing actions at the site, aiming at addressing some of the issues highlighted by the 2011 reactive monitoring mission which assessed the state of conservation of five of the main components of the property (the Great Mosque and its Spiral Minaret, Abu Dulaf Mosque, the Caliphal Palace - Qasr al-Khalifa, Al-Ma'shuq Palace and Tell es-Sawwan) and defined priority measures to be implemented. (Report available online at the following web address: https://whc.unesco.org/en/sessions/36COM/documents/). No information has been provided on whether these priority measures have been implemented since then.

Several factors affecting the property were identified, including the lack of a permanent management and conservation unit, the limited capacities for implementation of conservation measures, the lack of comprehensive planning tools, including a management and a conservation plan and issues related to permanent control and security.

The ongoing actions described by the State Party in its report consist of restoration works, notably at the Malwiya Minaret, the Great Mosque and a pathway surrounding the latter. No further details were provided regarding these interventions (maps showing the exact location, scope, timeframe, budget, human resources mobilized, etc.). The State Party also acknowledged the lack of staff, capacities and means to properly manage the site thus reiterating its call for international support for the planning of projects, restoration works and research.

Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2013

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies note that although efforts have been made by the State Party in regard to the conservation and protection of the property, the information provided on the actions undertaken is still too limited. Priority has to be given to the problem of lack of human and financial resources and of a clear work plan in the identification of the corrective measures and drafting the Desired state of conservation for the property. They recommend that the responsible authorities request the support of the UNESCO Office for Iraq to address these issues and look for potential international funding, including a Request for International Assistance from the World Heritage Fund.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2013
37 COM 7A.25
Samarra Archaeological City (Iraq) (C 276 rev)

The World Heritage Committee,

1.  Having examined Document WHC-17/37.COM/7A,

2.  Recalling Decision 36 COM 7A.22 , adopted at its 36th session (Saint-Petersburg, 2012),

3.  Urges the State Party to pursue its efforts in implementing the recommendations of the 2011 reactive monitoring mission, and to prioritize the implementation of the following actions:

a)  Develop baseline documentation, including missing architectural plans and topographic surveys, carry out a detailed conservation condition survey,

b)  Undertake identified preventive conservation actions to ensure the stability of the built fabric,

c)  Identify regulatory measures to ensure the protection of the property and establish protocols for the approval of public works in the vicinity of the site, including the development of heritage and environmental impact assessments,

d)  Initiate the planning process for the development of the Management Plan for the property, including a comprehensive conservation plan,

e)  Establish a site management unit with adequate staff to implement priority conservation measures as well as maintenance and monitoring actions;

4.  Encourages the State Party to submit an International Assistance Request to facilitate the implementation of the above;

5.  Reiterates its request to the State Party to develop, in consultation with the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies, proposals for corrective measures and for the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger, together with a proposed timeframe for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 38th session in 2014;

6.  Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2014 , 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 38th session in 2014;

7.  Decides to retain Samarra Archaeological City (Iraq) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

37 COM 8C.2
Update of the List of World Heritage in Danger (retained properties)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined the state of conservation reports of properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC-13/37.COM/7A, WHC-13/37.COM/7A.Add and WHC-13/37.COM/7A.Add.
  2. Decides to maintain the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger:
  • Afghanistan, Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Decision 37 COM 7A.29 )
  • Afghanistan, Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley (Decision 37 COM 7A.30 )
  • Belize, Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System (Decision 37 COM 7A.16 )
  • Central African Republic, Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.1)
  • Chile, Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works (Decision 37 COM 7A.37 )
  • Colombia, Los Katíos National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.17 )
  • Côte d'Ivoire, Comoé National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.2 )
  • Côte d'Ivoire / Guinea, Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve (Decision 37 COM 7A.3 )
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo, Virunga National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.4 )
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo, Kahuzi-Biega National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.5 )
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo, Garamba National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.6 )
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo, Salonga National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.7 )
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo, Okapi Wildlife Reserve (Decision 37 COM 7A.8 )
  • Egypt, Abu Mena (Decision 37 COM 7A.23 )
  • Ethiopia, Simien National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.10 )
  • Georgia, Bagrati Cathedral and Gelati Monastery (Decision 37 COM 7A.32 )
  • Georgia, Historical Monuments of Mtskheta (Decision 37 COM 7A.33 )
  • Honduras, Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve (Decision 37 COM 7A.18 )
  • Indonesia, Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra (Decision 37 COM 7A.14 )
  • Iraq, Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Decision 37 COM 7A.24 )
  • Iraq, Samarra Archaeological City (Decision 37 COM 7A.25 )
  • Jerusalem, Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls (Decision 37 COM 7A.26 )
  • Madagascar, Rainforests of the Atsinanana (Decision 37 COM 7A.11 )
  • Mali, Timbuktu (Decision 37 COM 7A.19 )
  • Mali, Tomb of Askia (Decision 37 COM 7A.20 )
  • Niger, Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Decision 37 COM 7A.12 )
  • Palestine, Birthplace of Jesus: Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage Route, Bethlehem (Decision 37 COM 7A.27 )
  • Panama, Fortifications on the Caribbean Side of Panama: Portobelo-San Lorenzo (Decision 37 COM 7A.36 )
  • Peru, Chan Chan Archaelogical Zone (Decision 37 COM 7A.38 )
  • Senegal, Niokolo-Koba National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.13 )
  • Serbia, Medieval Monuments in Kosovo (Decision 37 COM 7A.34 )
  • Uganda, Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi (Decision 37 COM 7A.21 )
  • United Republic of Tanzania, Ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani and Ruins of Songo Mnara (Decision 37 COM 7A.22 )
  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City (Decision 37 COM 7A.35 )
  • United States of America, Everglades National Park (Decision 37 COM 7A.15 )
  • Venezuela, Coro and its Port (Decision 37 COM 7A.39 )
  • Yemen, Historic Town of Zabid (Decision 37 COM 7A.28 )
Draft Decision:   37 COM 7A.25

The World Heritage Committee,

1.         Having examined Document WHC-17/37.COM/7A,

2.         Recalling Decision 36 COM 7A.22, adopted at its 36th session (Saint-Petersburg, 2012),

3.         Urges the State Party to pursue its efforts in implementing the recommendations of the 2011 reactive monitoring mission, and to prioritize the implementation of the following actions:

a)         Develop baseline documentation, including missing architectural plans and topographic surveys, carry out a detailed conservation condition survey,

b)         Undertake identified preventive conservation actions to ensure the stability of the built fabric,

c)         Identify regulatory measures to ensure the protection of the property and establish protocols for the approval of public works in the vicinity of the site, including the development of heritage and environmental impact assessments,

d)         Initiate the planning process for the development of the Management Plan for the property, including a comprehensive conservation plan,

e)         Establish a site management unit with adequate staff to implement priority conservation measures as well as maintenance and monitoring actions;

4.         Encourages the State Party to submit an International Assistance Request to facilitate the implementation of the above;

5.         Reiterates its request to the State Party to develop, in consultation with the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies, proposals for corrective measures and for the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger, together with a proposed timeframe for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 38th session in 2014;

6.         Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2014, 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 38th session in 2014;

7.         Decides to retain Samarra Archaeological City (Iraq) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

 

Report year: 2013
Iraq
Date of Inscription: 2007
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (ii)(iii)(iv)
Danger List (dates): 2007-present
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 37COM (2013)
Exports

* : The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).

** : All mission reports are not always available electronically.


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