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Ancient Thebes with its Necropolis

Egypt
Factors affecting the property in 2013*
  • Changes in traditional ways of life and knowledge system
  • Deliberate destruction of heritage
  • Flooding
  • Housing
  • Land conversion
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • Water (rain/water table)
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Raise of the underground water level;
  • Risks of flooding (Valleys of Kings and Queens);
  • Absence of a comprehensive Management Plan;
  • Major infrastructure and development projects taking place or scheduled;
  • Uncontrolled urban development;
  • Housing and agricultural encroachment on the West Bank;
  • Demolitions in the villages of Gurna on the West Bank of the Nile and transfer of the population.
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2013

Total amount granted: USD 1,131,000from the Japanese Funds-in-Trust 2002-2004 and 2008 (wall paintings restoration in the tomb of Amenophis III).

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2013
Requests approved: 1 (from 2001-2001)
Total amount approved : 7,000 USD
Missions to the property until 2013**

2001: ICOMOS mission; 2002: hydrology expert mission; July 2006 and May 2007: World Heritage Centre missions; April 2008: World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS mission; May 2009: World Heritage Centre /ICOMOS mission.

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2013

A report on the state of conservation of the property was sent by the State party on 20 February 2013 as requested by the World Heritage Committee.

a)  Management plan

The State Party indicated that the process for developing a management Plan for the property has started with the creation of the National Committee for World Heritage sites management, through Ministerial Decree 19. It is expected that the Committee will define and enforce, through participatory processes, diverse strategies to ensure effective management systems for World Heritage sites in Egypt. In addition, it is expected that Geographical Information System (GIS) will be utilised for the archaeological surveying of all sites to process geographic data and produce integrated maps that will be readily available to all stakeholders. Capacity building is also anticipated for archaeologists and conservators working at these sites. No specific timeframe is provided for the finalisation of the management plan.

b)  Implementation of conservation projects at the property

The State Party provided a list of several maintenance and development projects that have been implemented between 2011 and 2012. These have included projects such as reduction of groundwater levels beneath the temples, the removal of modern encroachments and houses which will result in the expansion of the buffer zone, capacity building for archaeologists and conservators through the training field school in Luxor, archaeological research, the development of storage facilities and moving of collections, etc.

 

The report also provides a list of actions foreseen for 2013, including the Reservation project of Luxor and Karnak temples, the restoration project for the Khnosu Temple, the road lighting project, among others, on the Eastern Bank. For the Western Bank, the development of the Valley of the Queens, in collaboration with the Getty Conservation Institute is foreseen, as well as the restoration and development works as several temples and tombs. Excavation works are expected to continue at both banks throughout 2013. No additional information was provided on the projects foreseen for the Corniche or the landing stage for cruise boats on the Western Bank.

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

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies note that several infrastructure projects, such as the construction of new entrances, parking lots, and the construction of a visitor centre on the Eastern bank, were implemented without having submitted their technical specifications for review prior to their implementation. They would underscore the significance of informing about potential developments and providing technical details to ensure that the conditions of integrity continue to be met and that the Outstanding Universal Value of the property is not compromised. Although they recognise the importance of continuing archaeological research and conservation work at the property, they note that these activities continue to be implemented without a management plan that would not only integrate all components of the property but that would also provide policy frameworks and guidance for all interventions.  

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2013
37 COM 7B.48
Ancient Thebes with its Necropolis (Egypt) (C 87)

The World Heritage Committee,

1.  Having examined Document WHC-13/37.COM/7B,

2.  Recalling Decision 36 COM 7B.50 , adopted at its 36th session (Saint Petersburg, 2012),

3.  Notes the information provided by the State Party on the implementation of projects at the property and urges the State Party to reduce interventions at the property to only essential stabilization works until the integrated management plan is fully developed and adopted;

4.  Reiterates its request to the State Party, in accordance to Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines , to provide detailed information on the planning and design of proposed and on-going projects, in particular those related to infrastructure development, for review prior to implementation;

5.  Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2015 , 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 39th session in 2015. 

Draft Decision:  37 COM 7B.48

The World Heritage Committee,

1.  Having examined Document WHC-13/37.COM/7B,

2.  Recalling Decision 36 COM 7B.50, adopted at its 36th session (Saint Petersburg, 2012),

3.  Notes the information provided by the State Party on the implementation of projects at the property and urges the State Party to reduce interventions at the property to only essential stabilization works until the integrated management plan is fully developed and adopted;

4.  Reiterates its request to the State Party, in accordance to Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, to provide detailed information on the planning and design of proposed and on-going projects, in particular those related to infrastructure development, for review prior to implementation;

5.  Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2015, 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 39th session in 2015.

 

Report year: 2013
Egypt
Date of Inscription: 1979
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (i)(iii)(vi)
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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