NINETEEN sites have been inscribed on the World Heritage List following deliberations that took place in Bahrain.
They were among 28 nominations – including five natural sites, three mixed sites and 20 cultural sites – that were discussed during the 42nd session of the World Heritage Committee (WHC), which will end tomorrow at the Ritz Carlton Bahrain.
The sites were officially inscribed after deliberations and recommendations by WHC’s advisory boards, the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), along with member states.
One such natural site was France’s Chaine des Puys – Limagne fault tectonic arena, which was inscribed after 11 years of dedicated work aimed at getting the site listed.
The fault, which takes the form of a vegetated scarp around 700m high, lies parallel to the Chaîne des Puys volcanic alignment, and can be traced over a distance of 30km from Enval to Ceyrat.
“I’ve been working for 11 years now to have it listed so it’s a long process,” said Puy-De-Dome Local Council project manager Cecile Olive-Garcia as French flags were raised in celebration when the announcement was made during the session.
“We are the local stakeholders and it’s fantastic.
“What is exceptional on this site is that you can understand how continents break up and it means you know what is at stake when there is continental rifting.
“I’m really happy to be here and looking forward to celebrating with my team.”
For inclusion on the World Heritage List, sites must be of outstanding universal value (OUV) and meet at least one of 10 selection criteria.
The WHC session is being chaired by Shaikha Haya bint Rashid Al Khalifa, Bahrain’s former ambassador to United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco), and has gathered more than 2,000 experts from all over the world.
The 19 sites include 13 cultural sites, two of which are in the GCC, three natural sites and three mixed sites.
The cultural sites inscribed were:
1. Aasivissuit – Nipisat, an Inuit hunting ground in Denmark
2. Archaeological Border Landscape of Hedeby and the Danevirke in Germany
3. Naumburg Cathedral in Germany
4. Victorian and Art Deco Ensemble of Mumbai in India
5. Sassanid Archaeological Landscape of Fars Region in Iran
6. Ivrea, an industrial city of the 20th century in Italy
7. Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki region in Japan
8. Thimlich Ohinga Archaeological Site in Kenya
9. The Ancient City of Qalhat in Oman
10. Sansa, Buddhist Mountain Monasteries in the Republic of Korea
11. Al Ahsa Oasis, an evolving Cultural landscape in Saudi Arabia
12. Caliphate City of Medina Azahara in Spain.
13. Gobekli Tepe in Turkey
The natural sites inscribed were:
1. Fanjinghan in China
2. Chaine des Puys – Limagne fault tectonic arena in France
3. Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains in South Africa
The mixed natural and cultural sites were:
1. Pimachiowin Aki in Canada
2. Chiribiquete National Park – ‘The Maloca of the Jaguar” in Colombia
3. Tehuacan-Cuicatlan Valley, an originary habitat of Mesoamerica in Mexico
The World Heritage Committee also approved the extension of a World Heritage Site in the Russian Federation which is the Bikin River Valley as an extension of Centreal Sikhote-Alin inscribed in 2001.