Monday, June 18, 2007

Committee to review 45 candidates for inscription on UNESCO’s World Heritage List

Between the 23rd of June and the 2nd of July, the World Heritage Committee will meet for its yearly session in New Zealand. Friday, UNESCO announced that 45 possible new sites will be discussed. The exact composition of these 45 is not made public, but combining the info from various sources I think the ones summed up below are a pretty accurate guess.

Ville historique de Berat
Foundational City Area of La Plata
Sydney Opera House
Bregenzerwald Cultural Landscape
Gobustan Rock Art Cultural Landscape
-Bosnia and Herzegovina
Mehmed paša Sokolovic’s Bridge in Višegrad
Site sacré du temple de Preah Vihear
Rideau Canal
Kiaping Diaolou and Villages
South China Karst
-Czech Republic
Hand Paper Mill at Velke Losiny
Paimio Hospital
-France / Spain
Rivage méditerranéen des Pyrénées
Bordeaux, Port de la Lune
Les concrétions des grottes françaises, témoins exceptionnels
Ecosystem and Relict Cultural Landscape of Lopé-Okanda
Housing Estates in the Berliner Modern Style
Old Town of Corfu

Red Fort Complex
Samarra Archaeogical City
Bahá'í Holy Places in Haifa and the Western Galilee
The Dolomites
Valnerina e Cascate delle Marmore
Iwami-Ginzan Silver Mine Site and its Cultural Landscape
Sacred Mijikenda Kaya Forests
Sulamain-Too Cultural Landscape (Sacred Mountain)
Forêts humides de l’Atsinanana
Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve
Campus Central de la Ciudad Universitaria
Batanes Cultural Landscape
Gdansk – Town of Memory and Freedom
-Republic of Korea
Jeju Volcanic Island and Lava Tubes
-Serbia and Montenegro
Gamzigrad – Romuliana, the Palace of Galerius
-Slovakia / Ukraine
Beech Primeval Forests of the Carpathians
-South Africa
Prince Edward Islands
-South Africa
Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape
Teide National Park
Jungfrau – Aletsch – Bietschhorn – extension
Lavaux, vignoble en terrasses face au lac et aux alpes
Parthian Fortresses of Nisa
-United Kingdom
Darwin at Down
Ba Be National Park

Being on the List of 45 isn’t a guarantee that the site will definitely make the World Heritage List 2007. During the Committee’s meetings, the reports of the advisory bodies ICOMOS (cultural) and UICN (natural) about the status and merits of the sites are discussed. These reports, and some politics added, can make the difference between ‘In’ or ‘Out’.
Word has spread (word travels very fast on the internet) that the UK entry (Darwin at Down) and the Japanese entry (Iwami-Ginzan Silver Mine) have received negative recommendations from ICOMOS. Maybe the two countries will withdraw their proposed sites, so they can brush them up and send them in another year. As a negative recommendation by the advising body not automatically results in missing out on a place on the list, they also might take the chance and leave it to the discussions.

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