The 31st session of the World Heritage Committee, currently holding its annual meeting in Christchurch, New Zealand, decided to remove the Kathmandu Valley World Heritage Site from the List of World Heritage in Danger.
The Kathmandu Valley World Heritage property, inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1979, was added to the List of World Heritage in Danger in 2003 at the 27th session of the World Heritage Committee. This was following years of assessment to evaluate the effect of pressure from uncontrolled urban development affecting the outstanding universal value of the site. Following this decision, the World Heritage Committee requested Nepal to re-define the boundaries of the World Heritage site, and to establish buffer zones around them. The Committee further requested an Integrated Management Plan of the site to be prepared and adopted by the concerned authorities, which included the establishment of adequate legal tools for the protection of the site.
From 2003 onwards, substantial efforts have been made towards ensuring better protection of the site. The redefined boundaries of the site were revised and adopted by the World Heritage Committee in 2006. The Integrated Management Plan, which clarifies the duties and responsibilities of the different authorities involved, was completed more recently and was evaluated by a UNESCO World Heritage Centre-ICOMOS joint reactive monitoring mission, which visited the Kathmandu Valley in April 2007.
Based on the progress made since 2003, the World Heritage Committee decided on Monday, 25 June 2007, that the national and local capacity and commitment, built through the establishment of the Integrated Management Plan, would now be sufficient to ensure better control for the preservation of the outstanding universal value of the Kathmandu Valley World Heritage site’s heritage. Therefore, the site was removed from the List of World Heritage in Danger. Many member countries of the World Heritage Committee congratulated Nepal for its efforts and supported the draft decision. Nepal, at the World Heritage Committee, mentioned that it would continue its efforts to implement the Integrated Management Plan, and to work closely with UNESCO.
- Source:UNESCO Kathmandu