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The history of World Heritage List

The concept of World Heritage was launched after The Second World War when one of the most unique cultural monuments in the world, Ramses II temple at Abu Simbel, was threatened by destruction during the building of the Aswan Dam in Egypt in 1959. The invaluable archaeological remains were saved by a worldwide action initiated by UNESCO, which also triggered a discussion concerning the need for a global convention in order to protect the major cultural and natural heritage sites of the world.

On the 16th November 1972 UNESCO adopted a convention concerning the World’s natural and cultural heritage. The intention of the convention is to protect the places in the world of outstanding universal value, which belong to all mankind.

Outstanding universal value means cultural & or natural significance which is so exceptional as to transcend national boundaries and to be of common importance for present and future generations of all humanity. As such, the permanent protection of this heritage is of the highest importance to the international community as a whole.

World Heritage


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