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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05PARIS7037
2005-10-13 13:45:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Paris
Cable title:  

USUNESCO: US, ISRAEL AND 10 OTHERS ELECTED TO

Tags:   SCUL  SENV  CJAN  UNESCO 
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						UNCLAS PARIS 007037 

SIPDIS

FROM USMISSION UNESCO PARIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SCUL SENV CJAN UNESCO
SUBJECT: USUNESCO: US, ISRAEL AND 10 OTHERS ELECTED TO
THE WORLD HERITAGE COMMITTEE



1. Summary. The United States was elected on the
first round October 10 to the 21-nation World Heritage
Committee ("Committee"), which decides policy matters
concerning the 189-Member World Heritage Convention of
1973, such as selection of sites for UNESCO's World
Heritage List. Israel also was elected to one of the
12 vacant seats on the first round. End summary.



2. The World Heritage List now comprises 812 sites,
including the Statute of Liberty, the Grand Canyon,
Mont St. Michel in France, the Mostar Old Bridge in
Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Bamiyan, Afghanistan
site of the destroyed giant Buddas. (The web site
(http://whc.unesco.org/) allows easy access to country
and site information.) Inscription of a site on
UNESCO's prestigious World Heritage List often brings
out strong national feelings and is often seen as a
sure way to enhance tourist revenues.



3. There are no plans to seek US additions to our 20
World Heritage sites. This was a strong point for the
USG candidacy, as there is a feeling that some
countries run for the Committee with an eye towards
advocating on the Committee for the inscription of
additional sites in their country on the World Heritage
List.



4. Mauritius was elected in a preliminary round, which
is reserved for candidates with no sites on the World
Heritage List. In addition to the US and Israel,
Canada, Madagascar, Morocco, South Korea, Spain and
Tunisia were elected. Cuba, Peru and Kenya were
elected in a second round, completing the list of 12
new members on the Committee.



5. The 21 nations who now sit on the Committee are:

Benin, Canada, Chile, Cuba, India, Israel, Japan,
Kenya, Kuwait, Republic of Korea, Lithuania,
Madagascar, Mauritius, Morocco, Netherlands, New
Zealand, Norway, Peru, Spain, Tunisia, and the United
States of America.



6. The elections took place in Paris at the biennial
meeting of the General Assembly of the Convention, to
which the 189 members who are signatories to the
convention are invited. (Note. By tradition, these
elections are held during the biennial UNESCO General
Conference. End note.)

Oliver