1.         Simien National Park (Ethiopia) (N 9)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1978

Criteria  (vii)(x)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/9/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1978-1996)
Total amount approved: USD 233,171
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/9/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

N/A

Previous monitoring missions

November 1996: technical mission

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Presence of armed groups

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/9/

Information presented to the Bureau of the World Heritage Committee in 1996

The Centre and IUCN have received a report on a Field Study on the Flora and Fauna of the Simien Mountains prepared by the University of Berne (Switzerland). The report indicates a deterioration of the Walia ibex population and that other large mammals (such as bushbuck and bushpig) have become extremely rare. IUCN will provide additional information on the state of conservation of the site.

Action Required

The Bureau may wish to examine the report that will be provided by IUCN.

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1996

The Centre and IUCN have received a report on a field study on the flora and fauna of the Simien Mountains prepared by the University of Berne (Switzerland). The report indicates a deterioration of the Walia ibex population and that other large mammals (such as bushbuck and bushpig) have become extremely rare. At the twentieth session of the Bureau, additional information on the state of conservation of the site was provided by IUCN (loss of biodiversity, encroachment at the borders of the site, impacts of the road construction) and a report by the University of Berne was made available to the Bureau members. The recommendations of this report were endorsed by the Bureau, including a planning and coordination meeting at the regional level, a technical mission to the site and possible submission of a technical assistance request for both the meeting and the finalization of the Simien Mountains Baseline Studies.

As a follow-up to the recommendations by the Bureau, a technical mission to the site is scheduled from 13 to 19 October 1996. The mission objectives include identification of the current status of the management and administration of Simien National Park, review of current development activities, evaluation and report on the nature and extent of current threats to Simien National Park and assistance to Ethiopian institutions responsible for the Park and its surrounding rural area in the formulation of a technical assistance request.

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN

The Bureau may wish to examine the report that will be provided at its twentieth extraordinary session and take the appropriate action thereupon.

Decision Adopted: 20 BUR IV.7

The Centre and IUCN have received a report on a Field Study on the flora and fauna of the Simen Mountains prepared by the University of Berne (Switzerland). The report indicates a deterioration of the Walia ibex population and that other large mammals (such as bushbuck and bushpig) have become extremely rare. In addition, IUCN stressed the serious situation at the ite, including the loss of biodiversity, the encroachment at the borders of the site, and the impacts of the road construction. An Action Plan for the site was proposed by the University of Berne. The report of the University of Berne was made available to the Bureau members and the following three main recommendations of this report were endorsed by the Bureau:

1) Support a planning and coordination meeting at the regional level, involving major stakeholders of the Simen Park area, with the general objective to update management planning of the Park and its buffer zone.

2) Organize a technical mission by the World Heritage Centre in the near future, i.e. September/October 1996, with the objective of assisting in the formulation of a possible submission to the Centre for technical assistance for (1) above.

3) Within the World Heritage Centre's mandate for better monitoring of African conservation sites, provide financial support for the finalization of the recent Simen Mountains Baseline Studies carried out in 1994-96, in order to make available to all stakeholders the informatioon collected in the studies for the above planning meeting.

Decision Adopted: 20 EXT.BUR V.B.1.2

Decision Adopted: 20 COM VII.D.32

VII.32 Simen National Park (Ethiopia)

The Bureau at its twentieth extraordinary session recalled discussions held at its twentieth session concerning reports received by the University of Berne (Switzerland) on the deterioration of the Walia ibex population and other large mammals (such as bushbuck, Simen fox and bushpig) which have become extremely rare. At the twentieth session of the Bureau additional information on the state of conservation of the site was provided by IUCN (loss of biodiversity, encroachment at the borders of the site, impacts of the road construction) and a report by the University of Berne was made available to the Bureau members. The Bureau endorsed recommendations made in this report, including a planning and coordination meeting at the regional level, a technical mission to the site and the preparation of a technical assistance request.

As a follow-up to the recommendations by the Bureau, a technical mission to the site took place from 2 to 9 November 1996 which included review meetings with the Ethiopian Wildlife authority, the Wildlife Programme Steering Committee, UNDP, UNCDF, as well as meetings with regional governments' representatives in Bahr Dar on the possibilities for sustainable coexistence of wildlife and natural resources with human land users. As a result of the mission an international assistance request was received and information to the Bureau accompanied by a summary report including draft recommendations, (Information Document WHC-96/CONF.203/INF.2) and the Committee (Information Document WHC-96/CONF.201/INF.23).

The recommendations included the co-sponsoring of a workshop with stakeholders scheduled for April 1997 and a co-ordination of donor involvement, as well as a recommendation to include the site on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

IUCN provided additional information on the state of conservation of the site. It was recalled that considerations have been given to placing this site on the List of World Heritage in Danger since 1987 and that all requirements for inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger stipulated in Paragraph 79 of the Operational Guidelines were met.

The Committee, considering the information provided and the recommendations of the mission contained in Information Document WHC-96/CONF.201/INF.23 decided to inscribe Simen National Park on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decision Adopted: 20 COM VIII.A.4

VII.4 The Committee at its twentieth session examined the state of conservation reports contained in Working Document WHC-96/CONF.201/7B, and additional information provided in Information Document WHC-96/CONF.201/INF.23 and decided to include the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger:

Simen National Park (Ethiopia)

Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve (Honduras)

Ichkeul National Park (Tunisia)

Garamba National Park (Zaire)

Decision Adopted: 20 COM XII

XII. The Bureau at its twentieth extraordinary session noted that several requests for international assistance were related to state of conservation reports on the same properties and suggested the Committee to consider if these should be examined together. The Committee approved the recommendation of the Bureau. Furthermore, the Delegate of Germany proposed that all training requests submitted for World Heritage funding on a yearly basis be studied together so as to provide information on the level of funds obligated on a regular basis. The Delegate of Canada insisted that these training programmes be evaluated, as it has been done within the training strategy for natural heritage. The Committee requested the Secretariat "to call upon the advice of the experts of the appropriate bodies (ICOMOS, IUCN and ICCROM)", according to paragraph 102 of the Operational Guidelines. Australia requested that in presenting requests to the Committee for international assistance, the Centre states, when appropriate, if the competent advisory body has been consulted. The Committee requested the advisory bodies to inform the World Heritage Centre of all their activities concerning World Heritage sites. In order to facilitate the consultations with the advisory bodies, the Committee decided to modify in paragraph 108 of the Operational Guidelines the deadline for the submission of international assistance requests, which will now be 1 September.

A. NATURAL HERITAGE

A.1 Technical Cooperation

A.I.1 Technical Workshop on the Conservation of Simen National Park (Ethiopia) (US$ 46,000 requested)
The Committee approved the request for a reduced amount of US$ 30,000 and requested the State Party in consultation with the Secretariat and IUCN, to better define the programme of the workshop, the expected outputs and to revise the budget.

A.2 Training

A.2.1 Nineteenth Protected Area Course CATIE, (Costa Rica) (US$ 48,000 requested)
The Committee approved a sum of US$ 30,000 for participants to attend the Nineteenth International Protected Area Course, CATIE, Costa Rica.

A.2.2 Individual Scholarships for the School for the Training of Wildlife Specialists, Garoua, (Cameroon) (US$ 45,000 requested)
The Committee approved an amount of US$ 45,000 for three scholarships for three students from State Parties of francophone African countries for a two-year period (1997/98 and 1998/99).

B. CULTURAL HERITAGE

B.1 Technical Cooperation

B.1.1 Historic Centre of the Town of Olinda (Brazil) (US$ 33,000 requested)
Considering the potential inclusion of Olinda in a major programme for the development of tourism in the north-east of Brazil with subsequent funding possibilities for the rehabilitation and restoration of Olinda, the Committee approved the amount of US$ 33,000 for this technical cooperation to support the municipality authorities in the creation of a project office in Olinda for a feasibility study on urban rehabilitation and restoration.

B.1.2 Conservation of Traditional Houses in Luang Prabang (Laos) (US$ 49,900 requested)
The Committee approved an amount of US$ 39,900 to meet the above request (with a reduction of input for the purchase of building material from US$ 20,000 to US$ 10,000) to co-finance a project to impart skills for the conservation of traditional wooden houses; to ameliorate the quality of locally produced bricks and roof tiles and to distribute traditional building material (roof tiles and wood) to renovate ten houses owned by poor families.

B.1. 3 Serra da Capivara National Park (Brazil) (US$ 35,000 requested)
The Committee approved an amount of US$ 35,000 for technical cooperation for the documentation, inventory and observation of the conditions of the rock paintings at Serra da Capivara National Park.

B.1.4 Joya de Ceren Archaeological Site (El Salvador) (US$ 10,000 requested in addition to US$ 25,000 already approved in 1994)
Considering the fragility of the site and the complexity of its conservation and management and the need to continue the process started in 1994, the Committee approved the additional amount of US$ 10,000 for an international seminar on the conservation and management of Joya de Ceren and its surroundings that will be held in 1997.

B.1.5 The Third General Assembly of the Organization of World Heritage Cities and the 4th Symposium of World Heritage (Evora, Portugal) (US$ 50,000 requested)
The Committee, in examining this request recalled the decision of the Committee at its eighteenth session that the World Heritage Fund should not finance statutory meetings nor subsidies for other organizations. The Committee noted that US$ 15,000 financial input from the 1997 UNESCO Regular Programme budget to this General Assembly of O.W.H.C. was proposed in the 1997 budget under the Promotional and Educational Activities. The Committee decided to approve a contribution of US$ 30,000 to the Municipality of Evora on an exceptional basis, for the Symposium on Tourism and World Heritage Cities. This grant from the Fund is to finance the participation of mayors of World Heritage Cities in developing countries.

B.2 Training

B.2.1 Regional Training Course on Conservation and Protection of Monuments and Sites for Architects of the Maghreb Region in Tunis (2nd session, November 1996 - July 1998) (Tunisia) (US$ 36,000 requested)
The Committee approved US$ 36,000 for three fellowships for three non-Tunisian students for the second session of the two-year in a regional training activity of the course, which would result greatest importance.

B.2.2 Latin America and the Caribbean: Regional Graduate Training Course on 'Integrated Urban and Territorial Conservation' (ITUC/BR) (request submitted by Brazil) (US$ 42,600 requested)
The course responds to the training strategy for cultural heritage and the needs identified through a great number of state of conservation reports. Considering that the course is the first one of its kind in the region, that twenty-three World Heritage sites in the region are historical cities or urban areas representing fifty percent of the cultural sites, the Committee approved an amount of US$ 40,000, providing that fellowships be awarded to participants with a responsibility for properties inscribed on the World Heritage List.

B.2.3 Pilot Project on Conservation Programme James Island (Gambia) (US$ 40,000 requested)
The Committee approved the amount of US$ 40,000 in the light of the recommendation for the training strategy south of the Sahara, and requested ICCROM/GAIA to implement this project which is an illustration of their strategic approach. The project will cover on-site training in James Island to enable the Museums and Monuments Department to prepare conservation plans not only for James Island but for other sites as well.

B.2.4 Training Course for an Integrated Approach to Urban Conservation (ICCROM) (US$ 40,000 requested)
Given that the advisory bodies are being requested, within the overall strategy described in Document WHC-96/CONF.201/12, to develop thematic courses at the international level and adapt them at the regional level, the Committee approved the amount of US$ 30,000 to co-finance an international training workshop for World Heritage City managers to be organized at ICCROM with participants responsible for the conservation management of historic cities or areas, and teachers.

B.2.5 Conservation of Immovable Property in Sub-Sahara, Africa (ICCROM) (US$ 50,000 requested)
Given that the pilot project for Africa is part of the overall training strategy for cultural properties as described in Document WHC-96/CONF.201/12, the Committee approved the amount of US$ 50,000. This amount will co-finance the implementation of the first phase of the project, to organize a seminar in Africa with African partners, and identify scientific partners for thematic approaches for the preservation of stone, brick and wood and timber conservation and archaeological sites.