Tanzania (Xinhua) --
Tanzania got a standing ovation during
the 40th World Heritage Committee meeting in Istanbul,
Turkey due to the country’s well-preserved World
Heritage site and the fact that even the latest UNESCO’s
declaration was announced from here.
took part at the global meeting for the first time as
the member of the World Heritage Committee, representing
Africa together with Angola, Zimbabwe, and Burkina Faso.
At the Turkey held WHC meeting, according to Major
General, Gaudence Milanzi, Tanzania’s Permanent
Secretary of the Ministry of Natural Resources and
The ten-day occasion which kicked off on July 10,
this year, went in line with the side event to
commemorate 10 years of the African World Heritage Fund
Tanzania has seven world heritage sites, including
Selous Game Reserve, Serengeti National Park,
Kilimanjaro National Park and the Ngorongoro
The country was also represented by Ambassador Taj
Begum from the Embassy of Tanzania in France, Director
of Antiquities, Donatius Kamamba and Conservator of
Ngorongoro, Dr. Freddy Manongi.
In his statement, which was made available here on
Thursday, the Tanzanian official reminded members of the
World Heritage Committee meeting that the Ngorongoro
Declaration on Safeguarding African World Heritage as a
Driver of Sustainable Development was officially adopted
at the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, last June.
Owing to its outstanding universal natural and
cultural heritage value, Major General Milanzi informed
the delegates that Ngorongoro was the first Tanzanian
site to be inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1979
and as mixed property in 2010.
He informed the delegates that, internationally, the
Ngorongoro is also recognized as a part of the
Serengeti-Ngorongoro Biosphere Reserve under knitted
Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization’s Man and the Biosphere Program since 1981
and it is an aspiring Geo-park.
Major General Milanzi informed the delegates that the
Ngorongoro Declaration, different from other common
Declarations, is characterized by its attempts to
describe the concept of sustainable development in the
contents and contexts of development challenges facing
African states, drawing its mandates from the vast
experiences of the continent in conservation and
management of natural resources.
"The declaration addresses, in broader terms, the
issues of capacity in the management of the heritage
sites; it promotes social cohesion within and outside
their borders using heritage values and promotes gender
equity; it recognizes that social capital (partnership
and networking) important for conservation and
management of the sites; it reiterates the role of the
local communities in the conservation and management and
their dependence on World Heritage Committee," the
Permanent Secretary told the delegates.
The Ngorongoro Declaration of 2016 also recognizes
the massive direct and opportunity costs affecting the
rural population for the protection of the sites, and a
need to effectively and efficiently mitigate these
"But in order to ensure that the Ngorongoro
Declaration is implemented and tangible benefits are
gained from the sites as well as ensuring balanced
approach in heritage conservation and sustainable
development, we need action plans that are consistent
with the Declaration; undertaking of strategic
environmental appraisal of the plans; and monitoring and
evaluation of the development plans."
Major Generally Milanzi emphasized that Tanzania
understands that every development action has an impact
and that there is no impact free development.
He re-iterated that every decision about the heritage
sites, including ‘no go decision’ or ‘no action
decision’ promoted by developed nations, had impacts on
our natural and cultural heritages.
He was on view that science and technology have
advanced so much over the decade, and therefore, with
appropriate science and technology, African states can
optimize conservation and use of the world heritage
sites with minimum possible adverse effects and without
compromising the values of these sites, and in essence,
this is sustainable development.
The World Heritage Committee comprises
representatives from 21 States Parties to the Convention
concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and
Natural Heritage elected by the General Assembly of
States Parties to the Convention.
session seeks to eliminate risk factors threatening
ISTANBUL Turkey (Xinhua) --
The World Heritage Committee,
at its 40th session in Istanbul, on Thursday recommended
strong measures seeking to eliminate or mitigate the
risk factors that have been threatening the heritage
sites around the world.
"We must stop the destruction," said Manuel Rodriquez
Cuadros, the ambassador of Peru to the UN cultural
"For this, we have given specific and very important
recommendations to the state parties for the
preservation of the world heritage in accordance with
their outstanding universal values," he told Xinhua.
He said one of the key recommendations by the
committee is eliminating totally or mitigating the risk
factors that have been producing the damages.
The envoy cited as an example the unplanned
urbanization and construction of high-rise buildings in
the historical center of Kiev, the capital city of
Ukraine, moves that had damaged "the outstanding
universal value of the site."
But things started to turn better when the
authorities in Ukraine and the Kiev municipality, in
line with the World Heritage Convention, decided to
demolish and suspend the construction of buildings that
were damaging the tissue of the site, said a report
released at the meeting.
"We have also recommended the state parties to stick
to the authenticity of the sites," said Cuadros.
In his view, all the reconstruction and repair works
on the damaged sites should be conducted by using the
original elements in order to preserve their
According to a report, strong earthquakes in 2015
badly affected the "attributes, authenticity, integrity
and management" of the heritage sites in the Kathmandu
Valley of Nepal, placing their outstanding universal
value at risk.
"Now it is vital that the damaged monuments or
structures in the valley be replaced by new elements,
which would be identical to the original ones, in line
with their authenticity," said Cuadros.
The World Heritage Committee, during its two-day
meeting on Wednesday and Thursday, completed the
examination of the state of conservation of 108 sites
inscribed on the prestigious World Heritage List.
As of now, the list has 1,031 sites in more than 160
The advisory bodies urged the committee to adopt
protective measures for the sites, stressing that many
threats have resulted from both natural causes and human
The committee has called for the state parties to
"systematically" utilize the assessment tools in the
review of state of conservation of properties in line
with the World Heritage Convention.
"The committee has done quite a good job and
discussed the details of the threats posed to world
heritage sites," said Susanna Lindeman, the world
heritage coordinator of Finland.
"We heard very encouraging speeches from delegations
of different countries about how they would aid world
heritage sites that are in trouble," she noted.
Meanwhile, the World Heritage Committee has added
five sites in Libya, Mali’s Old Towns of Djenne and
Uzbekistan’s Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz to the List
of World Heritage in Danger.
The sites in Libya—the archaeological sites of
Sabratha, Cyrene and Leptis Magna, Rock-Art Sites of
Tadrart Acacus and the Old Town of Ghadames—were
included on the list because of damages already done and
the threat of more to come in the conflict roiling the
North African country, a press release said.
Mali’s Old Towns of Djenne, an ancient center of the
trans-Saharan gold trade, was put on the list due to
security issues and violence that has dominated the
country since fighting erupted between insurgent groups
and Malian government forces in 2012.
Uzbekistan’s Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz was
placed on the list in danger due to the overgrowth of
tourism infrastructure in the site, according to a
Starting on Friday, the heritage committee, which
kicked off its 40th session on Sunday, will begin a
three-day review of the nominations of 27 new sites to
the World Heritage List.
"We have to consider each site within the context of
their own specific cultural or natural values,"
Ambassador Cuadros said. "I think we will have technical
evaluation of each nominee rather than have a political
Some 2,500 people from around the world are
participating in the 11-day annual session of the
heritage committee, which was formed in 1977 to enforce
the World Heritage Convention and manage the heritage
list created based on the convention.