Sat Jul 7, 2012 12:51PM
The 36th session of the World Heritage Committee has wrapped up in St. Petersburg, adding 26 new sites to UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The closing meeting marked the 40th anniversary of the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. The Committee registered five natural, twenty cultural and one mixed, increasing the number of World Heritage List properties to 962 and the number of countries with sites on the List to 157. The 21-member Committee also removed the Fort and Shalamar Gardens in Lahore (Pakistan) and the Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras (Philippines) from the List of World Heritage in Danger adding five others instead. Timbuktu and the Tomb of Askia (Mali), Birthplace of Jesus: Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage Route, Bethlehem (Palestine), Fortifications on the Caribbean Side of Panama: Portobelo-San Lorenzo (Panama) and Liverpool - Maritime Mercantile City (UK) were included on the Danger List because of concern for their conservation. The Gonbad-e Qabus and Isfahan’s Friday Mosque were the Iranian properties registered on the UNESCO World Heritage List this year. Armenian monastic ensembles of Iran, Bam and its cultural landscape, Bisotoun, Naqsh-e Jahan Square, Pasargadae, Persepolis, Sheikh Safi al-din shrine, Shoushtar historical hydraulic system, Soltaniyeh, Tabriz historic bazaar complex, Takht-e Soleyman, Tchogha Zanbil and the Persian garden are the other Iranian sites inscribed on the List. The 36th session of the World Heritage Committee was held for almost two weeks under the chair of Eleonora Mitrofanova, the Ambassador of Russia to UNESCO. The next session of the will take place in Phnom Penh (Cambodia) from June 17 to 27, 2013 under the chair of Cambodia’s Deputy Prime Minister Sok An. TE/TE