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Diyarbakır Fortress and Hevsel Gardens Cultural Landscape

Türkiye
Factors affecting the property in 2016*
  • Civil unrest
International Assistance: requests for the property until 2016
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved : 0 USD
Missions to the property until 2016**
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2016

The World Heritage Centre has received information from third parties and media reports on damages to the World Heritage property “Diyarbakır Fortress and Hevsel Gardens Cultural Landscape”.

On 15 December 2015, 17 December 2015, 6 April 2016 and 27 April 2016, letters were sent by the World Heritage Centre to the State Party requesting information and verification on the state of conservation of the property.

On 11 May 2016, the State Party submitted a report concerning the state of conservation of this property.  This report provides information on the incurred damages and subsequent progress achieved in safeguarding the property.

In its report, the State Party noted the following details:

  • A taskforce has been established to assess the damages on the property and its monuments. The taskforce concluded that there exist no major damages to the property in areas such as Diyarbakir Fortress, Ickale and Hevsel Gardens;
  • Temporary conservation measures had to be undertaken to protect the property due to terrorist incidents. The bailey, which has 82 bastions, has a number of passes that have been temporarily closed with concrete blocks, in line with a decision taken by the Diyarbakir Regional Board of Conservation of Cultural Heritage, for security reasons. The blocks will be removed at a later stage;
  • Damages on the bastions and the walls between the bastions are due to natural and environmental factors. A conservation Master Plan for Diyarbakir Urban Walls has been included in the 2016 investment program of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Studies in this regard have commenced;
  • Damage has been reported in the buffer zone, specifically in the neighbourhood of Surici;
  • The Prime Minister of Turkey pledged a recovery plan for Surici, including its conservation.
Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2016

Following reports on the situation, the property and its buffer zone have been exposed to widespread attacks and consequent security operations in recent months. As such, it has been reported that the historic structures of the property, as well as a number of historic buildings and monuments in the buffer zone suffered damage.

The security situation in Diyarbakir remains challenging for heritage preservation. Notwithstanding these difficulties, some progress has been made with small scale conservation initiatives. The State Party’s efforts in ensuring that the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), the authenticity and the integrity of the property are sustained, are to be noted.

It is recommended that the responsible authorities take all possible measures to safeguard the property to prevent further damage. It is also recommended that, as soon as the security situation allows, the responsible authorities carry out an in-depth assessment of the state of conservation of the property and its buffer zone. The results of this assessment are to be submitted to the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies for review, in line with the Operational Guidelines.

It is further recommended that the Committee request the State Party to invite, at a later stage and when the situation allows, a joint World Heritage Centre/Advisory Bodies Reactive Monitoring mission to the property to evaluate the nature and extent of any threats and propose appropriate measures to be taken.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2016
40 COM 7B.60
Diyarbakır Fortress and Hevsel Gardens Cultural Landscape (Turkey) (C 1488)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/16/40.COM/7B.Add.2,
  2. Recalling Decision 39 COM 8B.32, adopted at its 39th session (Bonn, 2015),
  3. Expresses its concern over the situation prevailing in Diyarbakir;
  4. Acknowledges the steps taken by the State Party to protect the property and its buffer zone and underlines the importance of preventing any further damage to the property;
  5. Requests the State Party, as soon as the security situation allows, to carry out an assessment of the state of conservation of the property and submit the results to the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies for review;
  6. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, 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 41st session in 2017.
40 COM 8B.50
Statements of Outstanding Universal Value of properties inscribed at the 38th (Doha, 2014) and 39th (Bonn, 2015) sessions and not adopted by the World Heritage Committee

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/16/40.COM/8B.Add,
  2. Adopts the following Statements of Outstanding Universal Value for the following World Heritage properties inscribed at the 38th (Doha, 2014) and the 39th (Bonn, 2015) sessions:
  • France, Climats, terroirs of Burgundy;
  • Jordan, Baptism Site “Bethany Beyond the Jordan” (Al-Maghtas);
  • Mongolia, Great Burkhan Khaldun Mountain and its surrounding sacred landscape;
  • Saudi Arabia, Rock Art in the Hail Region of Saudi Arabia;
  • Turkey, Diyarbakır Fortress and Hevsel Gardens Cultural Landscape;
  • Turkey, Ephesus;
  • Viet Nam, Trang An Landscape Complex.
Draft Decision: 40 COM 7B.60

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/16/40.COM/7B.Add.2,
  2. Recalling Decision 39 COM 8B.32, adopted at its 39th session (Bonn, 2015),
  3. Expresses its concern over the situation prevailing in Diyarbakir;
  4. Acknowledges the steps taken by the State Party to protect the property and its buffer zone and underlines the importance of preventing any further damage to the property;
  5. Requests the State Party, as soon as the security situation allows, to carry out an assessment of the state of conservation of the property and submit the results to the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies for review;
  6. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, 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 41st session in 2017.
Report year: 2016
Türkiye
Date of Inscription: 2015
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (iv)
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 40COM (2016)
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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