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2018 WHC Livestream

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Author Solivagant
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#1 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 03:32 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Now on here
Of course - they aren't scheduled to get round to "New Nominations" until Friday afternoon - after having had Friday morning "off" (for prayers??)
Some interesting issues before then on State of Conservation etc etc,

The Bahrainis have found another member of their extended Royal Family to chair it!

Last time Bahrain "held" the WHC in 2011 the Chairperson was HE Shaikha Mai Bint Mohammed Al-Khalifa President of Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities. However, because of internal disorder in Bahrain during the Arab Spring the meeting had been moved from Bahrain to Paris. Whether for that reason or otherwise we saw little of her after the opening formalities
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mai_bint_Mohammed_Al_Khalifa

This time the Chairperson is HE Shaikha Haya Rashed al-Khalifa. Once Bahrain's first female Ambassador (to Paris) and trained/practicing as a Lawyer. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haya_Rashed_Al-Khalifa

Author meltwaterfalls
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#2 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 04:05 
Just in time for the World Cup dropping to two kick offs a day!

Provisional timetable

Nominations are scheduled to be discussed from 15:30 (Manama time) on Friday through to Monday morning.

Author Solivagant
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#3 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 04:35 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Proposal from Norway to be discussed later that State Parties (with certain agreed exception categories) should pay "up front" when they make a nomination to cover cost of evaluation etc!! Possible savings said to be c$700k pa - so not too great an amount per site if we assume around 30 nominations pa (netting off those from "developing countries"). Possibly greater pressure not to nominate too "hopefully" but possibly even greater pressure not to reject?? (A bit like Universities in UK not feeling able to "fail" students who have paid for their course?)

"World Heritage Centre" now reports on what it has been doing in the past year. A lot of meetings and conferences - e.g In Algiers on preserving the Kasbah. "Sustainable development" seems to be the in subject for this WHC.

There is to be a meeting with the authors of the ICOMOS paper on "Sites of Memory etc "at which you will have a chance to ask them qs"

Suggestion that "Gender Parity" be included in the criteria for considering aspects for new sites (as well as geographical balance etc etc). Not quite sure how that would work!

Cooperation with FAO (Fruit and Agriculture Org) on WH and crops etc. We can possibly expect some of the more "unusual" crops worldwide to start being put forward -hopefully not more vineyards!

WH and Astronomy activities -should be good news for the Jodrell Bank nomination. Also mention of Archaeo-astronomy - a recent subject of interest to me following visits to and research in/reviews about Antequera and Bassae

"Partnerships" - one of the agenda papers lists new and ended ones - a new one is to produce movies about 75 WHS. Seabourne Cruises is also a partnership member and their cruises include "expert talks" on WHS - anyone want a job??

Author Solivagant
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#4 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 05:08 | Edited by: Solivagant 
New WHC members are each given the floor
Norway. Last year 2 thirds of decisions ignored the AB recommendations! "We need to do better"! It will be interesting to see what Norway does about it! Perhaps not a good year to get "Deferrals" altered???
China. China pledges to help under represented states parties in their nominations and on preservation etc etc.

Have to break off now so miss what Bosnia is going to bring to the Committee!

Author Solivagant
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#5 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 10:18 | Edited by: Solivagant 
The 3 ABs have presented their reports (I only heard that of IUCN) - a degree of dissatisfaction emerges from States Parties towards the ABs!
Cuba accuses them of using "non cordial language" in their evaluations - many SPs feel "offended"!! Need to "strike the right balance".
Norway wants "more trust"
Tanzania wants a better balance between "development" and "preservation" in the way ABs look at things
African countries in particular seem upset at the ICOMOS "Sites of memory report " - not enough African experts involved (or any at all??)
Suggestion that ABs dont have time and resources to do a proper evaluation - hint (from ICOMOS??) that perhaps an extra 12 months should be allowed in the process
Much time spent "wordsmithing" about whether relationships need to be "stengthened" and/or "improved" between SPs and ABs.
Suggestion of an item on the next agenda concerning "improving" dialogue between SPs and ABs
China is proving a good "diplomat" in the "middle" trying to calm and move things forward!
Question from Zimbabwe about what is being done in the mean time between now and the item appearing on the agenda next year!!!
The Cuban lady delegate (the one who complained about "non cordial language") is rather "fiery" in character - just as "one" might expect a strong Cuban lady to be!! "I had expected x to be done ......... but I am in your hands" she announces with a shrug of the shoulders and a "non physical" flouncing out!
They finally agree a wording and an item on this matter will be on the agenda next time - but what exactly will have happened in the mean time isn't really clear. no doubt it will get sorted out off line,

Author AJRC
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#6 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 11:13 
Solivagant
It's amazing and fantastic your job following the session and sharing with all of us. Thank you.

Can you explain what are the ABs and SPs, please?
Sorry if the answer is very obvious to everyone in the forum, but I'm not able to find a translatation.

Author Solivagant
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#7 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 11:23 
AJRC:
ABs and SPs

AB = Advisory Body (i.e IUCN and ICOMOS - also ICCROM)
SP = State Party (ie."country" acceding to the Convention)

Author Khuft
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#8 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 11:53 
Norway and Australia seem very concerned about dilution of the criteria of OUV and overturning of Advisory Bodies' opinions. I wonder if other state parties agree with this (or will do more than pay lip service).
Probably we'll see how this plays out when they go through the nominations - will Norway have enough fighting spirit?

Author Solivagant
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#9 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 12:21 | Edited by: Solivagant 
I have just seen the IUCN reply to a complaint made by Azerbaijan rather earlier -that ABs seem to accept comments from NGOs without checking these with SPs. IUCN says that this shouldn't (and doesn't) happen. Azerbaijan really was quite "hostile" to the ABs and was pushing very hard for the SPs to be "king" on these matters. In a less "diplomatic" environment one might have expected the ABs to state that they cannot be expected to compromise on their "professional" opinions just to keep SPs happy! If SPs within the WHC wish to overturn AB recommendations then they have the constitutional right to do so but they shouldn't expect to be able to get ABs to say simply what they wanted them to say!
As commented by khuft above one gets the feeling that when some SPs say that there should be more "dialogue" between ABs and SPs they mean more opportunity to get the ABs to change their recommendations to what they (the SPs) want!

Author Solivagant
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#10 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 12:35 | Edited by: Solivagant 
I get the feeling that the African members of the WHC are particularly "agitated" about the "ICOMOS Discussion paper on Evaluations of World Heritage Nominations related to Sites Associated with Memories of Recent Conflicts"
https://whc.unesco.org/document/167810
The paper specifically EXCLUDES "Sites of Memory" related to Slavery or Liberation Movements but does refer to the Rwanda Genocide sites - perhaps it is this which is making the African members a bit sensitive - as well as a general feeling that they are marginalised/excluded in discussions by "experts"?? Angola was particularly vociferous in criticism and Zimbabwe too.

Author Solivagant
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#11 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 12:52 | Edited by: Solivagant 
I wonder also if the comments made by several developing countries about the need for ABs to "properly" balance development and preservation indicates that there is going to be a "rearguard action" in support of Uzbekistan - perhaps with Azerbaijan leading it? (Tanzania and Zimbabwe also I think commented on the general issue). Uzbekistan might well claim that the "bits" of Shakhrisabz it bulldozed were necessary for development of the city?

Author meltwaterfalls
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#12 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 12:57 
Solivagant:
Much time spent "wordsmithing" about whether relationships need to be "stengthened" and/or "improved" between SPs and ABs.

Ah that must have been the bit I joined for, I couldn't quite grasp the context of everything they were discussing and it seemed somewhat interminable when missing that key piece of information.

Author Assif
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#13 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 14:39 
Solivagant:
Tanzania and Zimbabwe also I think commented on the general issue

I find that the African SPs have good reasons to be critical towards the ABs. A lot of their nominations from recent years were referred or deferred on the grounds of conservation (Arch Mts - Tanzania, Barotse - Zambia, Nyero - Uganda and more) and the comittee generally followed suit. In the meanwhile patches of beech forests in Europe got in with no discussion about human interference. Almost all of these forests are tiny and surrounded by roads and agricultural lands - and their suggested significance is recognized. With Tanzania - a single road through a much larger park was enough to strike its Arch Mts nomination out.
I can see why IUCN wants to preseve pristine nature in Africa or elsewhere, but yet I believe double standards are at play.

Author Assif
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#14 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 14:47 
Solivagant:
Suggestion that "Gender Parity" be included in the criteria for considering aspects for new sites (as well as geographical balance etc etc). Not quite sure how that would work!

I guess they such cases as Mt Athos or Okinoshima, where only men may enter. A WHS should be equally accessible to men and women.

Author Solivagant
Registered
#15 | Posted: 25 Jun 2018 15:21 
Assif:
I guess they such cases as Mt Athos or Okinoshima, where only men may enter. A WHS should be equally accessible to men and women.

I didn't get the impression that was the thrust - rather it related to new sites having a "female" OUV aspect. If they start getting involved in who can /cannot enter they will have to address the Non Muslims not allowed into Mosques etc in some Muslim countries (Morocco, Dome of the Rock) - more significant really than a couple of peripheral sites not allowing women - and the Okinoshima hardly allows ANYONE in!!

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