40th WORLD HERITAGE COMMITEE MEETING HELD IN ISTANBUL
World Heritage Committee (WHC) 40th Session, of which host country preparation was carried by Task Force composed of Ministry of Affairs, Ministry of Culture and Tourism, UNESCO Turkish National Commission, İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality and İstanbul Site Management Unit and with Chairing of Ambassador Mrs. Lale ÜLKER, Director General for Overseas Promotion and Cultural Affairs at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was held with the chairmanship of Turkey and hosted in Istanbul Congress Center (ICC) ON 10th-17th July 2016. According to committee internal regulation, Ambassador Lale ÜLKER became 40th Session Chairperson and Ministry of Affairs Head of Department for Cultural Diplomacy Mr. Cem KAHYAOĞLU was the Meeting Coordinator. 1971 people including 21 committee member states, delegates of 87 state parties of the Convention, NGO’s, academics, Local Governments, Site Managements delegates and Youth Forum participants were involved in the Committee works. UNESCO Turkish National Commission Member and Bursa Site Manager Prof. Dr. Neslihan DOSTOĞLU, Bursa Site Manager Staff Master Architect Ayten BAŞDEMİR TACİROĞLU and Master Art Historian Eser ÇALIKUŞU also participated in 40th UNESCO World Heritage Committee Meeting.
During the opening ceremony on 10th July 2016, after Prime Minister Mr. Binali YILDIRIM video message, Deputy PM Prof. Dr. Numan KURTULMUŞ, Director-Genaral of UNESCO Mrs. Irina BOKOVA, Minister of Culture and Tourism Prof. Dr. Nabi AVCI, Mayor of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Mr. Kadir TOPBAŞ, World Heritage Committee 40th Session Ambassador Mrs. Lale ÜLKER, UNESCO General Conference Chairman Mr. Stanley Mutumba SİMATAA, UNESCO Executive Board Chairman Michael WORBS and UNESCO Turkish National Commission Chairman Prof. Dr. Mr. M. Öcal OĞUZ gave speech; Mrs. İdil MALGİL (Turkey) and Mr. Jorge Antonio Chávez MAZUELOS (Peru), participants of “Youth Forum” organized by UNESCO Turkish National Commission and Istanbul Site Management Unit and participated by 31 young people coming from different countries, read final decleration of Youth Forum. At the end of the opening ceremony, Director-General Irina BOKOVA gave Mr. Kudsi ERGUNER, our reed flute (ney) artist, “UNESCO Peace Artist” title. After opening ceremony on 10th July 2016, a dinner was organized by Mr. Kadir TOPBAŞ, Mayor of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, and on 11th July 2016 another dinner, hosted by Prof. Dr. Nabi AVCI, Minister of Culture and Tourism, was organized.
WHC 40th meeting was followed by Turkey as a committee member with a delegation composed of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Culture and Tourism and UNESCO Turkish National Commission experts and directors. On the first item on agenda of WHC 40th Meeting (11th July 2016), İstanbul statement, which is about the calling for strengthening of awareness related to preserving cultural and natural heritage by considering new situations and developments, was accepted. Then summary of meeting negotiation and decisions of 39th session ,held in 2015, WHC and Advisory Boards reports, and reports about World Heritage Convention and Sustainable Developments, Thematic Programs, Capacity Improvement and Category 2 Centers were determined by the Committee in 2015, during 39th Meeting held in Bonn, summary of meeting negotiation and decisions, WHC and Advisory Boards reports, and reports about World Heritage Convention and Sustainable Developments, Thematic Programs, Capacity Improvement and Category 2 Centers were determined by the Committee. Conservation status reports of 155 properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger were evaluated by World Heritage Committee. After that, five of Libya’s properties, one of Uzbekistan’s and Mali’s properties were inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger. Also, one property of Federated States of Micronesia was inscribed on World Heritage List and at the same time its another property was inscribed on List of World Heritage in Danger; one of Georgia’s property was also removed from the List of World Heritage in Danger. WHC’s one of the most important items of agenda was to evaluate new nominations and nominations file related to new registers. As a result of this evaluation, after inscribing totally 21 sites, 12 cultural, 6 natural and 3 mixed sites, number of properties belonging to 165 of 192 state parties on the list became1052 (formerly 1031). Ani Archeological Site within the borders of Ocaklı Village in Kars, was also inscribed on World Heritage List during Istanbul session of WHC. After this inscription, number of World Heritage Sites in Turkey became 16. “Regulation Works For Coordination Between 1970 and 1972 Conventions” and “World Heritage Potentials of Turkey and World Agricultural Heritage” panels of UNESCO Turkish National Commission, which Prof. Dr. Nabi Avcı, Minister of Culture and Tourism participated, “You Can Save The Heritage” photograph exhibition, as well as more than 40 other events and exhibitions including dinner to meet World Heritage Experts and define strategy were organized within the scope of WHC Meeting 40th Session. During the closing session on 17th July 2016, it was accepted unanimously that World Heritage Committee 41th Session will be hosted by Poland in Krakow on July 2017.
For detailed info, see. http://unesco.org.tr/dokumanlar/duyurular/40dmkk.pdf