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World Heritage Centre News

Concern for oil spill in East Rennell, Solomon Islands, in central Pacific
An oil spill has reportedly occurred in East Rennell, Solomon Islands on Tuesday, 19 February when a bulk carrier ran aground at Kangava Bay, just outside of the World Heritage property. East Rennell was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1998 and is the largest raised coral atoll in the world. The site includes Lake Tegano, a brackish lake containing many rugged limestone islets which was the former lagoon on the atoll, a diverse and unmodified forest vegetation, and a marine area ...
Cultural Days in the Royal Palaces of Abomey (Benin)
Launched in July 2017 with financial support from the Netherlands Funds-in-Trust, the "Communities and reinforcement of the management of the Royal Palaces of Abomey World Heritage Site” project, has been successfully concluded with a three-day cultural celebration event, from 27 to 29 December 2018. These ‘Cultural Days' which responded to the theme "Let's open our Palaces!”, were organized by the Association pour la protection et la promotion du site des palais royaux ...
UNESCO's Heritage Emergency Fund supports Koutammakou (Togo) damage assessment
After heavy rains hit northeastern Togo in August 2018, UNESCO led an emergency mission to the World Heritage Property of Koutammakou, to assess the scale of the damage including to some of the world's rarest architectural structures – the two-storey mud "tower” houses known as Takienta.  The mission, which comprised three international and four national experts, visited the villages of Bassamba, Warengo, Pimini and Nadoba and held consultations with the local Batammariba ...
World Heritage Global Strategy in South Asia
UNESCO New Delhi and the Ministry of Tourism, West Bengal Government (India), in support of the Archaeological Survey of India, are organizing a sub-regional conference World Heritage Global Strategy in the context of South Asia on 21 and 22 February 2019 in Kolkata. The Global Strategy, launched in 1994 by the World Heritage Committee, has the aim to ensure that the List reflects the world's cultural and natural diversity of the whole humanity.  The objectives of the Conference ...
World Wetlands Day 2019: "Wetlands and Climate Change”
This year's World Wetlands Day under the theme of "Wetlands and Climate Change” highlights the importance of healthy and intact wetlands to one of the most pressing challenges of our times: climate change.  Celebrated annually on 2 February, the day the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands was adopted in 1971, World Wetlands Day is a success story of the international community ensuring efficient conservation and legal protection of wetlands worldwide.Covering a different topic each ...
Marine World Heritage 2019 Annual Report
Throughout 2018, the World Heritage Marine Programme led transformational changes at specific sites, furthered research on climate change impacts and advanced the fight against marine pollution. Download the Report The highlight of 2018 was undoubtedly the removal of the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System from the UNESCO List of World Heritage in Danger. Lauded in the New York Times as "A Victory for Coral”, the success followed an intensive period of landmark conservation action led ...
Decisions adopted by Ashgabat Silk Roads Coordinating Committee
Following the Fifth Meeting of the Coordinating Committee on Serial Transnational World Heritage Nomination of the Silk Roads, 4–5 December 2018, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, the participants including national focal points and experts from thirteen countries, adopted a list of decisions for further activities to preserve and manage the Cultural Heritage sites along the Silk Roads. The 5th Coordinating Committee Meeting brought together about 40 national focal points and experts from ...
In Memoriam: Bradnee Chambers, 1966-2019
The staff of the World Heritage Centre would like to express its sadness after learning that Dr. Bradnee Chambers, Executive Secretary of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), passed away on 23 January 2019 after a short illness. This is a tragic loss for CMS, all biodiversity related Conventions and the United Nations. Bradnee became Executive Secretary of CMS in 2013 and led the Convention through the Conferences of the Parties in Quito in 2014 ...
UN, WWF and world's insurers to develop pioneering industry guide to protect World Heritage sites
A pioneering insurance industry guide to protect our planet's most special places through its risk management, insurance and investment activities will be created in 2019 with leading insurers.  This follows the 2018 launch of the world's first insurance industry statement of commitment to protect World Heritage Sites developed by UN Environment's Principles for Sustainable Insurance Initiative (PSI), WWF and the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization ...
The World Heritage Centre Dispatches High-Level Reactive Monitoring Mission to Shakhrisyabz (Uzbekistan)
Following the decision adopted by the World Heritage Committee at its 42nd session (Manama, 2018), a high-level World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission, led by the Deputy Director of the World Heritage Centre, is being dispatched to the World Heritage property "Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz" (Uzbekistan) on 21-26 January 2019, at the invitation of the Uzbek government. The World Heritage Committee inscribed the Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz on ...

February 26, 2019

February 13, 2019

November 29, 2018

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