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Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park

Central African Republic
Factors affecting the property in 2015*
  • Civil unrest
  • Identity, social cohesion, changes in local population and community
  • Illegal activities
  • Livestock farming / grazing of domesticated animals
  • Mining
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Insecurity
  • Poaching
  • Mining
  • Transhumance and illegal grazing
  • Illegal fishing
  • Illegal occupation of the property
Threats for which the property was inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger
  • Illegal grazing;
  • Uncontrolled poaching by heavily armed groups subsequent loss of up to 80% of the Park’s wildlife and the deteriorating security situation;
  • Halt to tourism.
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger
Corrective Measures for the property
Timeframe for the implementation of the corrective measures
International Assistance: requests for the property until 2015
Requests approved: 4 (from 2001-2012)
Total amount approved : 225,488 USD
Missions to the property until 2015**

May 2001 and April 2009: Joint World Heritage Centre/IUCN Reactive Monitoring missions. 

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2015

On 20 March 2015, the State Party submitted a report on the conservation of the property, available at https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/475/documents/. The State Party has not yet invited the reactive monitoring mission requested by the Committee in its Decision 38 COM 7A.34. It has not yet been possible to organize the workshop to assess the feasibility of the restoration of the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) and the preparation of an emergency action plan due to the political instability and fragility of the security situation in the country.

In its report, the State Party reiterates its willingness and strong political commitment to the conservation of the property. It informs of the signature of a peace agreement between the Séléka rebels and the Anti-balaka and the planning, in the near future, of a forum at Bangui regarding the restoration of peace. It notes the presence of international armed forces and the French army in the region of the property. The report also refers to the general state of insecurity in the region of the property.

However, the report provides no information on the implementation of the corrective measures or the present situation in the property. Most of the information concerns activities implemented during the 2009-2011 period.

Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2015

Although there is a slight improvement as compared to the previous year, the security situation in and around the property remains problematic. Unfortunately, the State Party report only contains obsolete information and does not permit an effective evaluation of the state of conservation of the property, or the implementation of the corrective measures.

IUCN has obtained through other sources information on the North-east Wildlife Ecosystems of the Central African Republic (CAR) (Ecofaune), implemented by the State Party with support from the European Union, aimed at the conservation of the National Parks of Manovo-Gounda St Floris  and Bamingui-Bangoran and the surrounding hunting zones. Despite the difficult security situation, the State Party has continued the implementation of the project and attempted to recommence the surveillance operations in the southern part of the Bamingui Park and in the cynegetic zones between the two Parks, where the hunting syndicates have indicated their intention to recommence their activities. Nevertheless, the report clarified that there was no possibility of surveillance activities in almost the entire zone of the project, and notably within the property.

It should be noted that at the 35th session of the Committee (UNESCO, 2011), the World Heritage Centre and IUCN considered “that it would seem that criterion (x) is called into question because of the sharp decline in the wealth of biodiversity present at the time of inscription, and of the disappearance of almost all key species of large mammals, due to poaching and competition with transhumant cattle that have invaded a large part of the property. Criterion (ix) is also questionable as the effective disappearance of most big game key species questions the representativeness of the property and the natural ecological processes”. At its 38th session (Doha, 2014), the Committee expressed its grave concern that the property may have lost its Outstanding Universal Value (OUV). With continued insecurity and lack of any surveillance of the property in the face of extremely important pressure since the last session of the Committee, the perspectives for the restoration of the OUV appear more and more questionable.

In the absence of information to permit an analysis of the present situation, it is recommended that the Committee reiterate its concerns and that it request the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre / IUCN reactive monitoring mission, as soon as the situation allows, to assess the state conservation of the property and to respond to the question of whether there remain perspectives of regeneration of the characteristics of the property that justify its OUV, or whether a withdrawal from the World Heritage List should be envisaged, taking into account the procedure foreseen in Chapter IV.C of the Operational Guidelines.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2015
39 COM 7A.1
Manovo Gounda St. Floris National Park (Central African Republic) (N 475)
The World Heritage Committee,
  1. Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/7A.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 38 COM 7A.34, adopted at its 38th session (Doha, 2014),
  3. Regrets that the report of the State Party does not allow an assessment of the state of conservation of the property, or the implementation of the corrective measures;
  4. Notes that, although there is a slight improvement in comparison with the previous year, the security situation in and around the property remains problematic and does not allow for any surveillance activity within the property;
  5. Reiterates its grave concern regarding the probable loss of most of the flagship species of the large mammals of the property, due to poaching and impacts from transhumant cattle;
  6. Also reiterates its continued concern that the property could lose its Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), which could lead to its withdrawal from the World Heritage List, in accordance with Paragraph 176 d) of the Operational Guidelines;
  7. Reiterates its request to the State Party to organize a workshop to evaluate the feasibility of the restoration of the OUV of the property under the present security conditions and based on these conclusions to prepare an emergency action plan taking into account the corrective measures adopted by the Committee at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009);
  8. Requests the State Party to elaborate through the participatory available means, an emergency action plan taking into account the corrective measures adopted by the Committee at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009), in order to address the current biodiversity loss situation and attempt to restore the OUV of the property;
  9. Also requests to the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre / IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission as soon as the security situation permits, to assess the state of conservation of the property and to evaluate the perspectives for the regeneration of the characteristics of the property to justify its OUV, or whether a removal of the property from the World Heritage List should be envisaged, in accordance with the procedure foreseen in Chapter IV.C of the Operational Guidelines;
  10. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2016, an updated report, including a 1-page executive summary, on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 40th session in 2016;
  11. Decides to continue to apply the Reinforced Monitoring Mechanism to this property;
  12. Also decides to retain the Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park (Central African Republic) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
39 COM 8C.2
Update of the List of the World Heritage in Danger

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined the state of conservation reports of properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC-15/39.COM/7A and WHC-15/39.COM/7A.Add),
  2. Decides to retain the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger:
  • Afghanistan, Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Decision 39 COM 7A.38)
  • Afghanistan, Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley (Decision 39 COM 7A.39)
  • Belize, Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System (Decision 39 COM 7A.18)
  • Bolivia (Plurinational State of), City of Potosi (Decision 39 COM 7A.44)
  • Central African Republic, Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.1)
  • Chile, Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works (Decision 39 COM 7A.45)
  • Côte d'Ivoire, Comoé National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.2)
  • Côte d'Ivoire / Guinea, Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve (Decision 39 COM 7A.3)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Virunga National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.4)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kahuzi-Biega National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.5)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Garamba National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.6)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Salonga National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.7)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Okapi Wildlife Reserve (Decision 39 COM 7A.8)
  • Egypt, Abu Mena (Decision 39 COM 7A.24)
  • Ethiopia, Simien National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.10)
  • Georgia, Bagrati Cathedral and Gelati Monastery (Decision 39 COM 7A.40)
  • Georgia, Historical Monuments of Mtskheta (Decision 39 COM 7A.41)
  • Honduras, Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve (Decision 39 COM 7A.20)
  • Indonesia, Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra (Decision 39 COM 7A.15)
  • Iraq, Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Decision 39 COM 7A.25)
  • Iraq, Samarra Archaeological City (Decision 39 COM 7A.26)
  • Jerusalem, Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls (site proposed by Jordan) (Decision 39 COM 7A.27)
  • Madagascar, Rainforests of the Atsinanana (Decision 39 COM 7A.11)
  • Mali, Timbuktu (Decision 39 COM 7A.21)
  • Mali, Tomb of Askia (Decision 39 COM 7A.22)
  • Niger, Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Decision 39 COM 7A.12)
  • Palestine, Birthplace of Jesus: Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage Route, Bethlehem (Decision 39 COM 7A.28)
  • Palestine, Palestine: Land of Olives and Vines – Cultural Landscape of Southern Jerusalem, Battir (Decision 39 COM 7A.29)
  • Panama, Fortifications on the Caribbean Side of Panama: Portobelo-San Lorenzo (Decision 39 COM 7A.46)
  • Peru, Chan Chan Archaelogical Zone (Decision 39 COM 7A.47)
  • Senegal, Niokolo-Koba National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.13)
  • Serbia, Medieval Monuments in Kosovo (Decision 39 COM 7A.42)
  • Solomon Islands, East Rennell (Decision 39 COM 7A.16)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Damascus (Decision 39 COM 7A.30)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Bosra (Decision 39 COM 7A.31)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Site of Palmyra (Decision 39 COM 7A.32)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Aleppo (Decision 39 COM 7A.33)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Crac des Chevaliers and Qal’at Salah El-Din (Decision 39 COM 7A.34)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient Villages of Northern Syria (Decision 39 COM 7A.35)
  • Uganda, Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi (Decision 39 COM 7A.23)
  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City (Decision 39 COM 7A.43)
  • United Republic of Tanzania, Selous Game Reserve (Decision 39 COM 7A.14)
  • United States of America, Everglades National Park (Decision 39 COM 7A.17)
  • Venezuela, Coro and its Port (Decision 39 COM 7A.48)
  • Yemen, Historic Town of Zabid (Decision 39 COM 7A.37)
Draft Decision: 39 COM 7A.1

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/7A.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 38 COM 7A.34, adopted at its 38th session (Doha, 2014),
  3. Regrets that the report of the State Party does not allow an assessment of the state of conservation of the property, or the implementation of the corrective measures;
  4. Notes that, although there is a slight improvement in comparison with the previous year, the security situation in and around the property remains problematic and does not allow for any surveillance activity within the property;
  5. Reiterates its grave concern regarding the probable loss of most of the flagship species of the large mammals of the property, due to poaching and impacts from transhumant cattle;
  6. Also reiterates its continued concern that the property could lose its Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), which could lead to its withdrawal from the World Heritage List, in accordance with Paragraph 176 d) of the Operational Guidelines;
  7. Reiterates its request to the State Party to organize a workshop to evaluate the feasibility of the restoration of the OUV of the property under the present security conditions and based on these conclusions to prepare an emergency action plan taking into account the corrective measures adopted by the Committee at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009);
  8. Requests to the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre / IUCN reactive monitoring mission as soon as the security situation permits, to assess the state of conservation of the property and to evaluate the perspectives for the regeneration of the characteristics of the property to justify its OUV, or whether a removal of the property from the World Heritage List should be envisaged, in accordance with the procedure foreseen in Chapter IV.C of the Operational Guidelines;
  9. Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2016, an updated report, including a 1-page executive summary, on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 40th session in 2016;
  10. Decides to continue to apply the Reinforced Monitoring mechanism to this property;
  11. Also decides to retain the Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park (Central African Republic) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Report year: 2015
Central African Republic
Date of Inscription: 1988
Category: Natural
Criteria: (ix)(x)
Danger List (dates): 1997-present
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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