The UNESCO Center and Advisory Bodies have given Macedonia and Albania an additional deadline of two years to implement the recommendations contained in the UN World Heritage Committee Reactive Missions to avoid moving the Ohrid region to the list of World Cultural and Natural Heritage in Danger.
The UN World Heritage Committee on Education, Science and Culture, at its 44th session in the Chinese city of Fuzhou, accepted the proposal of the National Commission for UNESCO of Bosnia and
Herzegovina to delete the provisions of the draft decision that meant moving the region to the list of endangered treasures of universal value.
Bosnia and Herzegovina justified its proposal with the need to encourage Macedonia and Albania in their efforts to meet the recommendations of previous reports, to support, not demotivate, the activities they jointly implement to address the challenges.
The proposal to amend the BiH decision was backed by Russia, Hungary, Saudi Arabia, China and Guatemala. The UNESCO National Commissions of Norway, Bahrain and Australia have decided to move the Ohrid region to the list of endangered world treasures, which they believe will further motivate them in their efforts to implement integrated measures and activities to eliminate the registered threats.
Macedonia’s Minister Culture Irena Stefoska pointed out that Macedonia has demonstrated perseverance and readiness in the past two years to intensify the efforts to fulfill the recommendations and remarks of UNESCO. In a short address to the participants in the meeting, she asked for an extension of the deadlines to enable further action in all areas for additional protection of world cultural and natural wealth.
Bosnia and Herzegovina and Norway are tasked with forming a joint group to monitor the implementation of the recommendations and to inform the Secretariat and the World Heritage Committee.
In addition, Macedonia and Albania are required to submit to the World Heritage Center an updated joint report on the state of the region by February 1, 2023, including a report on the progress made in implementing the above remarks, which would result in further activities and possible relocation of the endangered World Heritage Site.