United nations educational, scientific and cultural organization convention concerning the protection of the world



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1 OPENING SESSION

1. The 26th session of the World Heritage Committee was opened by Mr Henrik Lilius, Chairperson of the World Heritage Committee, in the presence of Mr Lászlo Kocsi, Political Secretary of State of the Ministry of Cultural Heritage of Hungary and Mrs Mária Kóródi, Minister for Environment and Hydrology of Hungary.


2. The Chairperson welcomed Mr Lászlo Kocsi and invited him to deliver his address.
3. Mr Kocsi, the Political Secretary of State of the Ministry of Cultural Heritage of Hungary, presented the following speech:
"Dear Ladies and Gentlemen, dear participants,
I am pleased to welcome you to Budapest on behalf of myself and the Government of the Republic of Hungary, on the occasion of the meeting of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee held on the 30th anniversary of the execution of the World Heritage Convention. For a small central-European country that has always been proud of her culture, it is always a great pleasure to host the members of the Committee arriving from 21 different countries and all the observers participating in the meeting who arrived from almost 150 countries.
It is a great honour for us that this festive meeting takes place, and the declaration that determines the Committee’s further work and tasks will be passed by the festive meeting here in Budapest. It is a special privilege that we may salute here the highly esteemed Mr. Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO, who I will have the opportunity to have discussions with.
It makes almost 15 years now that Hungary has joined the family of countries having World Heritage sites, and one of the first sites included in the list was the banks of the Danube in Budapest. Since then our country proudly possesses seven World Heritage sites that attract many guests year by year, but at the same time burden the government with several tasks and responsibilities.
In 1987 when the Committee passed its decision on the inclusion of the first two sites, we started to learn how to take care of such sites and what does it mean that a property is declared to be a part of the world heritage. I think that the fact that this jubilee meeting takes place in Budapest means that we have already passed the elementary school and by now there might be some things we could show to others.
If we just have a look on our architectural heritage sites, more specifically on their manifoldness, it can be seen that our country endeavours the preservation of multicoloured cultural values. The first two World Heritage sites of Hungary are two spots greatly differing from each other, namely the banks of the Danube in Budapest, a metropolis gaining its present view in the 19th and 20th centuries, on the one hand, and Hollókő, a small village of the Slovak minority, on the other hand. These two sites, whilst they are intrinsic with our close ties to the universal and within that primarily to the Pan-European culture, highlight the importance of the preservation and development of the culture of countries and within them that of the minorities within a world that is going global. These minority cultures form integral part of the culture of a country, such as Hungary, and without these the majority culture could not become what it has during the centuries.
Two other sites are the thousand-year old Benedictine Abbey in Pannonhalma, which stands on the top of a lonely hill and catches the eyes from kilometres; and the ancient Christian catacombs in Pécs with the Mediterranean city embracing them, which symbolise a European Hungary. The 1000-year history of Hungary can be a good example, especially today, when our close neighbourhood – hopefully together with us – will become integral part of Europe. The example of our first king Saint István shows that there are historical situations when the survival of a people, a nation depends on whether they are able to become part of a common culture whilst maintaining their own culture. Whether they are able to preserve their uniqueness and therefore their identity, it was with Saint István’s historic act that he decided on the conversion from the tribal cults to Christianity and made this decision in such manner that the Hungarian characteristic were not lost either. This was the way the Hungarians claiming their origins from Emese, the legendary ancestress, became a Hungary, a country of the Blessed Virgin, Mary.
The agenda of the committee meeting suggests to me that in the following couple of days, besides the work you ought to do, you will have some possibilities to see some sites in Hungary and make a decision on what our country does for the preservation of her cultural heritage. I hope that your experiences will be satisfactory from the professional aspect, and at the same time these excursions will enable pleasant relaxation after hard work.
Until then, despite the high heat waves outside, I wish wise and successful discussions for all participants."
4. The Minister for Environment and Hydrology, Mrs Mária Kóródi then delivered her address:
"Mr. Chairman, Mr. Director, Members of the Committee, dear guests,
I am very pleased to welcome you in Budapest on the occasion of this extraordinarily important meeting.
I was asked to pass you greetings from the Government of the Republic of Hungary.

It is a great honour for us to welcome you here.



We hope that we could effectively contribute to the success and the results of the work you perform whilst staying with us.
We also hope that despite the workload you undertook you may have the possibility to better understand the cultural and natural values of Hungary, our hospitality, objectives and enforcements.
Meanwhile, in addition to bringing you the greetings from our Government I have another and extremely important mission. When it has became known that in my capacity as the minister of environment protection and water management affairs I might address you, I received several telephone calls. Many of my environment and nature conservationist friends and colleagues called me. They asked me to tell you that your presence in Budapest is not only a joyful occasion but even a real festivity. We deem the possibility of hosting you here as an honour and an encouragement.
I was asked to tell you that the Hungarians – the simple citizens feeling responsibility for the common cultural treasures of the world as well as the internationally esteemed experts, governmental people, civil activists – consider you as important allies, allies from whom we have learned a lot, and will learn more in the future. Since the common cultural treasures and natural values of mankind can be preserved together, in the frames of an alliance, it is true in Hungary as well as in any other parts of the world.
Hungarian environment and nature conservationists asked me to make another important point. They would like me to let you know that we Hungarians deem co-operation as the most important factor in the preservation of our cultural and natural heritage.
It is very obvious that we must co-operate with persons of particular localities and their local governments, national authorities, governmental and non-governmental organisations. We Hungarians have already understood that we have to co-operate on regional or on global level.
Let me give you an example: more than 90% of the subsurface waters in Hungary come from across the borders. The conclusion we arrived at on that basis is that the protection of our waters, and in general conservation of the Hungarian environment and nature could really be efficient only if we co-operate with our neighbours.
What is more, we seek regional or international co-operation. Because of our geographical circumstances and history, we were among the first ones to understand the truth in the “think globally, act locally” principle.
That fact that co-operation for us is not only a word but rather a daily routine cannot be better evidenced than by our co-operations with Slovakia and Austria concerning the Aggtelek-Slovak Karsts, and Fertő Lake.
Also, in the framework of international co-operation we try to make the protection of our newest National Park, the Őrség National Park inaugurated at the beginning of the year, more comprehensive.
We Hungarians agree that the conservation of the cultural and natural treasures is a joint responsibility of mankind. The term “joint responsibility”, however, could be interpreted in two ways.
The first one is a seductive interpretation. It says that a small country could do just a little for the preservation of the global cultural and natural heritage. A small country has limited capacities, restricted interrelations and constrained room for action in any international organisation.
This is, however, not the way we interpret the issue of “joint responsibility”. Instead of such a seductive one we endeavour a comprehensive and more driving interpretation. We believe that a country like ours, where in a small territory unequalled values can be found, is forced to take into consideration both of these reasons.
The first thing we must do is the preservation of the local values and (where necessary) reinstate, develop and publicise them.
The second (and this does not mean time sequence or order of importance, but coequality) is the declaration of our responsibility for the conservation of values located anywhere else in the world.
If we assent that the world would be poorer without the values to be found in our country then we should assent that we will be the lesser if the cultural heritage of mankind be damaged or washed away.
We all remember the silent astonishment when the world mourned the Buddha-statues destroyed by the Taliban. But I could give a similarly painful example much closer in space to us, we had the same feelings when the old bridge of Mostar has been shot to ruins.
It seems that when the moment of loss comes, the majority of mankind can associate itself with the feeling of joint remembrance. However, we, Hungarians would much prefer if joint rejoicing at the conservation of the values preserved could also go global.
But in order that an increasingly bigger part of mankind could feel responsible for our cultural and natural treasures and delight over their existence, these treasures should on the one hand be preserved, and on the other hand made known for the widest possible public.
Here in Hungary we are more and more aware and ready to undertake whatever is needed as part of this responsibility, and this situation has greatly added to by Hungary’s joining to the World Heritage Convention in 1985.
I think that the usefulness of the Hungarian activity is well proven by the fact that we have been elected to the World Heritage Committee in 1997 and in 2001 to the Bureau. A consequence of this is that the 30th anniversary meeting is organised in Hungary.
The impact of the very precisely defined professional criteria scheme of UNESCO can more and more be perceived in Hungary. On the cultural side singularity and integrity whilst on the natural side uniqueness and intactness became the main aspects.
Knowing all this (I may easily say) our value awareness or – if you like – proudness increased, since we possess several areas belonging to the above categories.
An overview of our endowments makes me say that we have several areas that may rightfully have your attention. Meanwhile I would like to call your attention to an extremely positive development. As the minister of environment protection I can learn day by day that in Hungary there is a breakthrough in the areas of environment awareness and value conservation.
It seems that it is high time for that, since the environment destroying socialist big industry has been collapsed and then the environment friendly technologies gradually have become more popular.
In parallel with that, the recognition of the natural and cultural values gained more room. And as of today, in consequence of the great economic transformation, increased attention and sensibility, coupled with constantly widening experience as well as gradually increasing resources dedicated to value conservation are available for us.
Thus in the future we may devote outstanding attention to the efficiency of the management plans dedicated to the World Heritage sites. We intend to implement them with caring authoritative work and appropriate professional attention. We will study the foreign examples concerning the impact of gaining the world heritage nomination to the status and conditions of the given values. To what extent is the possible increase of tourism advantageous, where can the eventual adverse impacts be seen and how could they be prevented. We are going to investigate the monitoring methods and the issue of improved information exchange.
Dear guests,
I am sure that if Hungary could manage her treasures and resources properly, and rely more and more on the knowledge, experience and co-operation possibilities that are inherent in our joining the Convention, the values to be found here will become truly the heritage of the world.
There are good chances for that since we have left the turbulent period of the political and economic transformation of the system behind. Today we arrived at a position when the hard and dedicated work in the twelve-year period having passed since the collapse of the dictatorial system produced serious results.
We are committed to perform harder and more persistently until gaining membership in the EU, and also afterwards as full members.
I am sure that this work will produce its results.
In hope of the above I wish you successful discussions and – of course – pleasant enjoyments here in Hungary. I am sure that your staying here will mean not only work for you but also some relaxation and joy. I hope that you will agree that Hungary is a country of people who are proud of and taking care for her values, and, who are meanwhile hospitable, helping and cooperative.
With these expectations I wish you successful discussions."
5. Mr Henrik Lilius, the Chairperson of the World Heritage Committee presented the following speech:
"Your Excellencies,

Members of the World Heritage Committee,

Distinguished Delegates,

Ladies and Gentlemen,


I have the great pleasure to open the 26th session of the World Heritage Committee and the task to chair the first agenda items of this Committee session. I have guided World Heritage during the past 6 month and I can truly say it was a challenge!
We have made a lot of progress for the future of World Heritage and I would like to highlight some of the major issues:
- With the last meeting of the drafting group for the revisions to the Operational Guidelines we have made a major step towards a user-friendly format of the main document, which will guide us, and all partners in World Heritage conservation. I sincerely hope that we have paved the way for the new Operational Guidelines to be adopted.


  • Concerning the reform process, we have now a World Heritage Committee, which is more representative for all regions and cultures of the world with many of you having a mandate of only 4 years to leave the place for others to come. At the same time we have now with 172 States Parties a truly universally accepted instrument in heritage conservation.




  • We have also worked considerably towards a more representative World Heritage List. But there is still much more to be done in this regard and the limitation to 30 sites is at the same time a period of reflection about the categories and types of heritage on the national tentative lists, the World Heritage List and of the potential we have to reveal for the future.




  • We have also seen some key actions to preserve the world’s heritage, among them addressing the situation with regard to the cultural and natural heritage of Afghanistan. On behalf of this Committee I attended the "International Seminar for the Rehabilitation of Afghanistan's Cultural Heritage" in Kabul, 27-29 May 2002. The report, together its conclusions and recommendations, was prepared for your review and further actions at this session of the Committee.




  • We have also seen an increased demand for international assistance, in particular with a high number of cultural heritage technical and training requests from all parts of the world, so that I have to inform you that I was not able to approve all requests as the budget was limited.

We have gone through some lively discussions during the past Committee and Bureau sessions and I would like to sincerely thank all of you who have made contributions to our common goals. The Convention is there to contribute to a better understanding of the cultural and natural diversity of the world. When I stood before you six month ago, as the new Chair of the World Heritage Committee, I stressed the importance of addressing the problem of heritage protection and conservation following my mission to Kathmandu (Nepal). Proactive measures for preventive action are more needed than ever. If the ultimate goal of heritage conservation is to improve the quality of our collective existence, and to transmit to future generations the diversity of our world, we must ensure that our work is development-oriented and constructive.


Let me also say that I would like to express my sincere thanks to you for your trust and confidence in me during my chairmanship. It was a pleasure for me working with you, the Committee members, its Bureau, the States Parties and advisory bodies in the implementation of such a prestigious instrument as the World Heritage Convention. And finally, I very much appreciated the continuous commitment of UNESCO, its Director-General and the Director of the World Heritage Centre and his staff."
6. The Chairperson invited the Representative of the Director-General of UNESCO, Mr Mounir Bouchenaki, Assistant Director-General for Culture, to take the floor. The speech of Mr Bouchenaki appears below:
"Excellence, Mr Lázlo Kocsi, Secretary of State for Cultural Heritage

Excellence, Mme Maria Korodi, Minister for Environment and Hydrology

Mr Henrik Lilius, Chairperson of the World Heritage Committee

Distinguished Chairpersons of earlier sessions of the Committee

Ladies and Gentlemen, Members of the Committee and Observers

Lades and Gentlemen, Representatives of IUCN, ICOMOS and ICCROM,



Ladies and Gentlemen,
In the name of Mr Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO, I welcome you all to the 26th session of the World Heritage Committee.
Allow me to thank the Government of Hungary for its generosity in welcoming, here in Budapest, this session of the Committee. I feel that it is especially appropriate that this session, which marks the 30th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention and the United Nations Year of Cultural Heritage, is held in the city that symbolises the symbiosis of cultural development with the natural environment. I am sure you will agree that the cultural splendour of Budapest would not have been the same without the Danube to inspire creativity and facilitate communication between civilizations.
In thanking our Hungarian colleagues for their magnificent work in the preparation of this session, I would like to pay tribute to our dear Ferenc Nemeth, whose untimely death last year was a shock to us all. In fact, I had the pleasure of being accompanied on my last visit to Hungary for the inscription ceremony of the City of Pecs by H. E. Ambassador Fasang and Ferenc. I can still hear her jovial laugh, and her commitment to conservation will always remain with us. On behalf of my colleagues of the World Heritage Centre and myself, allow me to have a special thought for Mme Nemeth and her two daughters.
It is for the second time in less than two years that a certain number of you are here in Budapest again. It is recalled that a special session of the Bureau of the Committee for the revision of the Guidelines was organized here in September 2000.
The Director-General, who will arrive on Friday for the 30th anniversary celebrations, requested me to convey his regret that he is unable to participate in the work of the Committee. He considers this session of particular importance in the history of the Convention, because many substantial issues are on the table for discussion and your decision.
One of them is the procedure for inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger. This issue is fundamental for the entire conservation process, and even for the credibility of the Convention. Following the request of the Belgian Delegation made during the Cairns session in December 2000, the UNESCO Secretariat carried out a legal analysis.
The second is the revision of the Guidelines. Thanks to excellent co-operation between the members of the new and previous Bureau, and the Centre, Sections I to V of the Guidelines, as well as their ten annexes, are now ready for your decision. This is the result of much hard work, which began two years ago during the expert meeting in Canterbury. I would like to thank the United Kingdom and its experts for the launching of this process, as well as the representatives of many States Parties for their continued support to the Secretariat throughout this exercise.
Although the revision of the Guidelines cannot be fully completed until certain points have been clarified, the Director-General would be particularly pleased to learn of the adoption of the sections already finalised. It is essential that a new version be distributed to States Parties so that they may become familiar with the new calendar, as well as the new requirements for the nominations for inscription and the requests for international assistance.
The third issue awaiting your examination and decision is that of the need or not to pursue the experiment concerning the limitation of new inscriptions to one per year by State Party. Some States Parties, particularly those among the "big" countries, in terms of size and population, with multi-ethnic and multi-religious communities, have expressed their dissatisfaction in this regard. I would therefore like the Committee to keep in mind during their deliberations on this subject, that one of the reasons that led us to make this limitation was primarily to allow the Secretariats of the Advisory Bodies and the Committee to manage the workload for which they are responsible.
In this respect, allow me to say that the limitation on the number of proposed nominations for inscription accepted each year has enabled the Secretariat to improve the technical examination process. It has also improved co-operation between IUCN, ICOMOS and the Centre, by guaranteeing correctly documented proposed nominations for inscription, with better defined protected areas, and more specific management mechanisms. Hence, I hope that a rigorous technical examination can be maintained, to the satisfaction of the States Parties.
I take this opportunity to thank the Advisory Bodies for their co-operation in this effort.
I would like to point out here that there is not one natural site proposed for inscription in this session. This poses a problem and it is evident that a particular effort is needed to reduce the imbalance between the cultural and natural sites on the World Heritage List, without, of course, going into inappropriate considerations of comparability.
In this context, the progress report on the work concerning the analysis of the World Heritage List and the national tentative lists was prepared by IUCN and ICOMOS for your consideration. UNESCO, the Centre first and foremost, will summarize this analysis study, at the regional level, taking into account the observations of the Committee regarding these studies.
Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentlemen,


This brings me to another important matter that requires your discussion. This is on working methods and time management. Despite the repeated call by the Committee to rationalize and reduce documents, the ever-growing demand by the Committee for studies, reviews and activities are resulting in precisely the opposite. There were 46 working documents and 23 information documents prepared for the 26th session of the Bureau held in April and for this current session of the Committee. Not only is this indigestible to the Members of the Bureau and the Committee, but it also presents an unsustainable situation for the staff of the Centre, many of whom have been obliged to work 70 hours a week, which has meant working late into the night and over the weekends.
This situation is not only for the few weeks before the Bureau and Committee but throughout the year. The volume of work in the preparation of the working documents of the Committee, has meant that the work in following-up on Committee decisions has had to be done in a shorter period of time. These follow-up activities include assistance to States Parties in the preparation of their tentative list, their nomination files and the site management plan, and in the organization of training activities and in meeting emergency situations. I would like to request that the number of agenda items be kept at a manageable level and that the Centre be provided with the human and financial resources required to meet the needs of the Committee and the growing number of assistance requests addressed to the Centre by States Parties.
The Director-General has already made great efforts to increase the human and financial resources of the Centre and is prepared to continue doing so. However, as those members of the Committee who are familiar with the UNESCO Executive Board and General Conference can attest, with a zero-growth budget and staff cost deficits to be managed, there is a limit to what the Director-General can do. This has meant more and more reliance on extra-budgetary funding to carry out the fundamental tasks of the Centre. The limited level of the World Heritage Fund and the fact that the majority of the UNESCO Regular Programme Budget to the Centre is used to finance the statutory meetings of the Convention, are putting additional pressure on the Centre to raise extrabudgetary funds. This means, practically speaking, preparing project proposals with the States Parties concerned, negotiating with donors, establishing implementation partners etc…all of which require staff time, since funds are insufficient to hire consultants.
This is clearly a situation created by the success of the Convention which now counts 172 signatories with 721 properties. But I would like to point out that there are close to 50 States Parties with no World Heritage sites. Is this because there are no sites of outstanding universal value within their territory ? It is mainly because they do not adequately understand the functioning of the Convention, and also because they lack human or financial resources to establish the laws, management plans and other prerequisites for the nomination. Some States Parties do not have adequate laws and site management plans for the successful inscription of their sites on the World Heritage List.
Partnerships and the creation of synergy with other international development co-operation agencies, both multi-lateral and bilateral, are essential if we are to really succeed in meeting the challenge of World Heritage protection.
The Director-General requests the Committee to look into how the working methods of the Committee can be improved to ensure that your own role in policy orientation, as well as the practical needs of the States Parties can be met.
The reform process initiated by the Committee more than five years ago at the 20th session held in Merida has led to a process of continual review of the working method of the Convention. First, in reviewing the working method of the Secretariat, the Committee developed guidelines on the use of the emblem, particularly in relation to fundraising activities to enable the Secretariat to move forward in relations with the private sector. The Committee also approved the overall strategy for public information, which has enabled the Secretariat to step up its contacts with the international press and media, and to assist States Parties by providing information for use in their national media.
Today, UNESCO’s visibility comes in large part thanks to public and media interest in World Heritage. The UNESCO website on the World Heritage is visited by over 3 million hits and 900,000 pages are consulted every month. Both in terms of the number of press and media coverage and website visits, World Heritage is clearly in the lead over other sectors of UNESCO.
Another important task is how best the Committee and UNESCO can meet situations arising from emergencies, both human-made and natural disasters. During this year alone, UNESCO has had to respond to numerous natural disasters, such as the earthquake in Georgia impacting on Tibilisi, the hurricane in La Havana in Cuba, the fire in Lima in Peru, the floods in Goiás in Brazil, strong winds damaging the Churches of Chiloe, among others which have caused significant damages to World Heritage properties.
Continued armed conflict in different regions of the world, sadly, leads to the destruction of cultural and natural heritage. It is hardly necessary to recall that the fundamental aim of the 1972 Convention is the protection, conservation and preservation of humankind’s heritage of outstanding value. Heritage of the Near and Middle East is extraordinarily rich and diverse and as we know, very many examples of this outstanding heritage are already inscribed on the List. It is from this heritage that the most significant testimonies of our history and our culture originate. It bears witness, through its exceptional variety, to the fact that this region was the cradle of extraordinary civilizations – a crossroad of peoples, cultures, languages, traditions –which produced the laws, alphabets, religions, sciences and arts that have spread throughout the entire world.
The protection and preservation of this unique heritage must be, as it is in other regions of the world, a priority in the framework of the mandate of this Committee in order to transmit to future generations the outstanding sites which we ourselves have inherited. In this region, troubled by long periods of conflict, no effort must be spared to attain this objective. The Director-General has expressed on many occasions his concern with regard to cultural heritage in the Palestinian Territories, notably during the last session of the Executive Board.
In fact, it is from the recognition of the diversity of heritage that mutual understanding and acknowledgement is borne. Heritage, in all its forms, studied and utilized, can be a vital element for dialogue, a means of paving the way towards a just and long-lasting peace.
This is echoed by the Decision of the United Nations General Assembly, which proclaimed 2002 the International Year for Cultural Heritage, and having as two major objectives: development and dialogue.
Looting of cultural properties, poaching of endangered species and their illicit traffic are adding to the damage of armed conflict. The ways and means of strengthening the implementation of the ensemble of international treaties for the protection of cultural and natural heritage need to be given direction. The Director-General himself will be sharing with you on Friday, his thoughts on the mutually supporting relationship between the World Heritage Convention and the other cultural conventions of UNESCO, including the newly adopted Convention for the protection of underwater cultural heritage, as well as the elaboration of an international legal instrument for the protection of intangible heritage.
In this regard, you will be examining later this week, the nomination of the Minaret of Jam in Afghanistan. This magnificent edifice of the 12th century has survived into our age despite the centuries of warfare and natural aggression. Helas, the loss of the Bamiyan Buddahs could not be prevented but I hope that the protection of heritage will be an integral part of the national reconstruction process. I will have the opportunity later to report to you about the recent initiatives taken by UNESCO in the protection of cultural and natural heritage in Afghanistan. I would like, once again, to thank His Excellency Mr Mohammed Raheem, Minister of Information and Culture of Afghanistan for joining us here today.
The challenge of heritage conservation in Afghanistan is indeed particular, but the problematic of heritage and development is one that is being faced in many developing countries. What is the role of heritage for the social and economic welfare of the people? How can the much needed improvement of infrastructure and economic activities be carried out without damage to the natural and cultural heritage of the country? These are the realities we face today in our daily work of heritage protection.
I trust that these and the many other issues requiring your policy elaboration and guidance can be addressed one after another. The World Heritage Convention, in 30 years of its history, has made ground-breaking contributions to conservation, at both the international and national levels. My colleagues at UNESCO and I have been privileged in supporting the efforts of the Committee in this endeavour, and we stand ready to continue serving you in the future for this great cause.
Last but not least, on behalf of the Director-General, my colleagues of the Centre, and on my own behalf, I would like to thank our friend, Mr Henrik Lilius for the tremendous work he did as Chair of the Committee over the past six months since the session in Helsinki and for the years before as Committee member. We will continue to count on you in the future.
I wish you every success in the deliberation of this important session of the Committee.
Thank you for your attention."
7. The Chairperson read out the names of the organisations that had requested to attend the meeting as observers.
8. Later in the morning, the Delegate of Egypt asked the Chairperson to again read the list of those organizations and to clarify the procedure allowing observers to attend the meetings of the Committee. He recalled that organizations need to have a verifiable link with the Convention or properties inscribed on the World Heritage List.
9. The Chairperson informed the Committee that a written request for observer status was required. He then declared the list of observers adopted (decision 26 COM 1). (The list of participants is included as Annex I to the Report (list of Decisions) of the session, document WHC-02/CONF.202/25)).





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