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Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat)

Iraq
Factors affecting the property in 2007*
  • Flooding
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • Water infrastructure
  • Other Threats:

    Fragile mud brick structures

Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports

a) Partial flooding and seepage due to a dam building project;

b) Fragile mud brick structures;

c) Absence of a comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan. 

Threats for which the property was inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger
  • Nearby construction of a dam entailing partial flooding and seepage;
  • State of war in the country.
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger

In light of the present situation in the country, specific benchmarks could not be identified or discussed.

Corrective Measures for the property

[as identified in Decision 27 COM 8C.45]

a) Relocation or cancellation of the dam project;

b) Emergency excavations and protective measures against seepage;

c) Establishment of a local management co-ordination unit on the site;

d) Preparation and implementation of a conservation and management plan;

e) Protection and consolidation of fragile mud brick structures.

The dam project has been cancelled and therefore items a) and b) are no longer applicable.

Timeframe for the implementation of the corrective measures
No specific timeframe has yet been set by the Committee or the State Party, which mainly depends upon the evolution of the situation in the country.
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2007

Total amount provided to the property: USD 6,000 from the Italian Funds-in-Trust. Extra-budgetary funding is allocated to cultural heritage preservation in Iraq, if not specifically for the site of Ashur (equipment, training, etc.).

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2007
Requests approved: 1 (from 2003-2003)
Total amount approved : 50,000 USD
Missions to the property until 2007**

Assessment mission in November 2002

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2007

As reported at the 28th (Suzhou, 2004), 29th (Durban, 2005) and 30th (Vilnius, 2006) sessions of the Committee, the assessment mission to the site aiming at developing an emergency conservation plan as well as the basis for a management plan of the property, could not take place, due to security constraints. However, the building of the dam which had partly justified the inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger had been cancelled, thus diminishing the threats identified.

At the date of drafting this document, no written report had been received by the World Heritage Centre, which was however informed by the State Party that such a report could not be produced within the present conditions in the country.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2007
31 COM 7A.17
Ashur (Qal’at Sherqat) (Iraq) (C 1130)

  The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-07/31.COM/7A,
  2.  Recalling Decision 30 COM 7A.20 adopted at its 30th session (Vilnius, 2006),
  3. Notes with great concern the deterioration of the situation in Iraq and deplores the loss of human lives;
  4.  Requests the international community, the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to continue their efforts in assisting the responsible Iraqi authorities in the protection of the natural and cultural heritage in the country;
  5. Also requests the State Party, in consultation with the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS, to develop a draft Statement of Outstanding Universal Value including the conditions of integrity and authenticity, for examination by the Committee at its 32nd session in 2008;
  6. Also requests the State Party, in consultation with the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS, to develop a draft statement of the desired state of conservation for the property based on its Outstanding Universal Value;
  7. Further requests the State Party, should the situation allow it, to establish an on-site management unit and to initiate the preparation of a Conservation and Management Plan for the property, and to present a report to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2008 for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 32nd session in 2008;
  8. Decides to retain Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Iraq) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
31 COM 8C.2
Update of the list of the World Heritage in danger - maintenance

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Following the examination of the state of conservation reports of properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC-07/31.COM/7A and WHC-07/31.COM/7A.Add, WHC-07/31.COM/7A.Add.2, WHC-07/31.COM/7A.Add.3),

2. Decides to maintain the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger:

  • Afghanistan, Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Decision 31 COM 7A.20)
  • Afghanistan, Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley, (Decision 31 COM 7A.21)
  • Azerbaijan, Walled City of Baku with the Shirvanshah's Palace and Maiden Tower (Decision 31 COM 7A.26)
  • Central African Republic, Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park (Decision 31 COM 7A.1)
  • Chile, Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works (Decision 31 COM 7A.29)
  • Côte d'Ivoire, Comoé National Park (Decision 31 COM 7A.2)
  • Côte d'Ivoire / Guinea, Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve (Decision 31 COM 7A.3)
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo Virunga National Park (Decision 31 COM 7A.4)
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo Kahuzi-Biega National Park (Decision 31 COM 7A.5)
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo Garamba National Park (Decision 31 COM 7A.6)
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo Salonga National Park (Decision 31 COM 7A.7)
  • Democratic Rep. of the Congo, Okapi Wildlife Reserve (Decision 31 COM 7A.8)
  • Egypt, Abu Mena (Decision 31 COM 7A.16)
  • Ethiopia, Simien National Park (Decision 31 COM 7A.9)
  • Germany, Dresden Elbe Valley (Decision 31 COM 7A.27)
  • India, Manas Wildlife Sanctuary (Decision 31 COM 7A.11)
  • Islamic Republic of Iran, Bam and its Cultural Landscape (Decision 31 COM 7A.22)
  • Iraq, Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Decision 31 COM 7A.17)
  • Jerusalem, Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls (Decision 31 COM 7A.18)
  • Niger, Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Decision 31 COM 7A.10)
  • Pakistan, Fort and Shalamar Gardens in Lahore (Decision 31 COM 7A.24)
  • Peru, Chan Chan Archaelogical Zone (Decision 31 COM 7A.30)
  • Philippines, Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras (Decision 31 COM 7A.25)
  • Serbia, Medieval Monuments in Kosovo (Decision 31 COM 7A.28)
  • United Republic of Tanzania, Ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani and Ruins of Songo Mnara (Decision 31 COM 7A.15)
  • Venezuela, Coro and its Port (Decision 31 COM 7A.31)
  • Yemen, Historic Town of Zabid (Decision 31 COM 7A.19)
Draft Decision: 31 COM 7A.17

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-07/31.COM/7A,

2. Recalling Decision 30 COM 7A.20 adopted at its 30th session (Vilnius, 2006),

3. Notes with great concern the deterioration of the situation in Iraq and deplores the loss of human lives;

4. Requests the international community, the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to continue their efforts in assisting the responsible Iraqi authorities in the protection of the natural and cultural heritage in the country;

5. Requests the State Party, should the situation allow it, to establish an on-site management unit and to initiate the preparation of a Conservation and Management Plan for the property, and to present a report to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2008 for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 32nd session in 2008;

6. Decides to retain Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Iraq) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Report year: 2007
Iraq
Date of Inscription: 2003
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (iii)(iv)
Danger List (dates): 2003-present
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 31COM (2007)
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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