UN renews danger list warning, tells Nepal not to open new roads through Chitwan National Park

File: Tourists enjoy elephant riding in Chitwan National Park

Kathmandu, July 3

The United Nations cultural agency, UNESCO, has once again told the government of Nepal not to construct any new road or upgrade the existing ones for commercial use inside the Chitwan National Park, warning it would put the Park on the List of World Heritage in Danger if Nepal fails to obey the request.

The 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee of the UNESCO currently being held in Baku of Azerbaijan endorsed the decision that says proposed Terai Hulaki Highway, the China-India Trade Links of State 3 and State 4, the Madi-Balmiki Ashram road and the Malekhu-Thori road pose a threat to the property.

Therefore, the Committee reiterated “its request to the State Party to make an unequivocal commitment not to allow the development of the Terai Hulaki Highway to proceed along its proposed alignment through the property, and not to approve any other new roads or the reopening/upgrading of old roads passing through the property.”

A failure to implement the recommendation will represent a potential danger to the outstanding universal value of the property, and thus form a clear basis for inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger, according to the decision.

Meanwhile, the agency appreciated the government for shifting the alignment of the East-West Electrified Railroad so that it does not cross the Park and undertaking an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for another alternative route.

The session is also likely to discuss the status of protected World Heritage sites in Kathmandu Valley. A draft decision proposes inscribing the Valley on the danger list.

Published on July 3rd, Wednesday, 2019 2:02 PM

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