05.07.2019 - UNESCO Office in Tashkent

The World Heritage Committee examinated the state of conservation report of the Historic Centre of Bukhara

The World Heritage Committee examinated the state of conservation report of the Historic Centre of Bukhara

The World Heritage Committee, meeting in Baku since June 30, reviewed the the state of conservation report of the “Historic Centre of Bukhara”, the World Heritage Property  submitted by Uzbekistan.

The report of the World Heritage Committee notes, that the protection, management and maintenance of the authenticity and integrity of the Historic City of Bukhara have been a source of great concern since 1997.

The April 2018 ICOMOS Advisory  mission reported  recent widespread damage and destruction of the attributes of the property’s OUV as a result of the realization the state Programme «On accelerated development of tourism potential of Bukhara city and Bukhara region 2017-2019», which is based on a national decree to stimulate tourism development  in the property and its region.

The project included large-scale construction, restoration, and infrastructural development; however, it has also led to the collapse of sections of important monuments, to a widening of streets, and to changes in the property’s urban topography, potentially destroying archaeological attributes. The Advisory mission in 2018 noted that the continued implementation of the project could have serious, irreversible negative impacts on the OUV of the property, as could reconstruction activities at damaged monuments utilising inappropriate methods and materials.

The Committee welcomes the reported moratorium on all construction work and on upgrades to the property and also welcomes the establishment of the World Heritage Property Steering Committee and the establishment of an Interagency Task Force to address emerging issues at the property.

In accordance with the decision of the World Heritage Committee (43 COM 7A.78), the Committee requests that the moratorium on all construction work and upgrades to the property be extended to include the buffer zone of the property. The Committee also requests Uzbekistan to invite a joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission to the property in order to assess the full scope of the impacts already caused to the property and its OUV, the efficacy of the Interagency Task Force and other management systems, to review the overall state of conservation of the property and the factors that constitute a threat to the property and to consider whether there is an ascertained or potential danger to the OUV of the property.

An updated report on the state of conservation of the “Historic Centre of Bukhara” will be considered by the World Heritage Committee at its 44th session in 2020.

The 43rd session of the Committee will last until 10 July. Broadcast available online.

Background:

The historical part of Bukhara was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1993. Bukhara, which is situated on the Silk Route, is more than 2,000 years old. It is the most complete example of a medieval city in Central Asia, with an urban fabric that has remained largely intact. Monuments of particular interest include the famous tomb of Ismail Samani, a masterpiece of 10th-century Muslim architecture, and a large number of 17th-century madrasas.




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