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Royal Palaces of Abomey (Benin) (C 323bis)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List 1985

Criteria (iii) (iv)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger 1985 - 2007

Previous Committee Decisions 30 COM 7A.1; 31 COM 7A.14; 32COM 7B.45

International Assistance Total amount provided to the property: USD 60,000 in 2000 and USD 17,000 in 2005.

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds Total amount provided to the property: USD 400,000 was granted by the Government of Japan in 1998; USD 50,000 granted in 2005 by the Riksantikvaren (Norwegian Cultural Heritage Directorate).

Previous monitoring missions 2004 and 2007: Joint World Heritage Centre / ICOMOS missions; 2006: World Heritage Centre / CRAterre- ENSAG / Getty Conservation Institute monitoring mission.

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

  • a)

    Absence of a national legislative mechanism for the protection of cultural heritage;

  • b)

    Major deterioration of almost 50% of the earthen structural components;

  • c)

    Lack of presentation and interpretation at the site.

Illustrative material http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/323/

Current conservation issues

The State Party submitted its state of conservation report on 28 March 2010. The report provides information on the major rehabilitation, capacity building, and other related activities undertaken in the framework the State Party’s effort to pursue the safeguarding works started in 2007. The described activities undertaken are hereafter summarized.

a) Progress in conservation works undertaken on the remaining components still under threat The State Party reports on the achievement of four major reconstruction activities since 2008:

  • -

    The reconstruction of Houegbadja Palace which included reconstructing 200 linear meters of fencing walls, the Logodo covered entrance, and the Tassinonxo royal priestess’ house. It was co-financed by Germany and the State Party through the Public Investment Plan.

  • -

    The reconstruction and enhancement of the Honnuwa of Agadja Palace. The project was co-financed by the City of Albi (France), Norway Cultural Heritage Directorate (Rijksantikvaren) through UNESCO, and the Africa 2009 Programme, and involved on-the- job training of ten young professionals to ensure the transfer of restoration techniques and know-how for a sustainable result.

State of conservation of World Heritage properties inscribed on the World Heritage List

WHC-10/34.COM/7B.Add, p. 81

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