Monday, June 19, 2017

Activities on Lake Ohrid Day, 21 june 2017

Credits: @ArdianFezollari 
Lake Ohrid is unique, and has its special day. This day is 21th of June and is celebrated every year from the Municipalities of Pogradec, Ohrid and Struga. The decision for declaring this day- as the Lake Ohrid Day, was taken 17 years ago in February 2000 by the Joint Lake Ohrid Management Board.This year is the Municipality of Pogradec organizing the activities on this day. It is become a tradition that each of three Municipalities around lake Ohrid (Ohrid, Struga and Pogradec) organize the joint celebration by rotation.
On this day, the Municipality of Pogradec will also open the Tourist Season for this year. The activities headed by the Mayor of Pogradec Mr, Eduard Kapri will start on 9.00 AM and will last in the late hours of evening.
It will be a tour in several places from Lin to Pogradec. The activities are starting in the City Square, where a special program is dedicated for children, with clowns, face painting, animated dancing, games, and other entertainment.
It continues at City's Odeon with the official celebration of this day, where three Mayors of Pogradec, Ohrid, Struga will hold a speech on this occasion.
A culinary festival as always is part of activities. There will be some air-sports activities, with aeronautic demonstration in the sky of the City.
Sports activities also include: Cyclic ride from Lin to the Lake's bridge; Swimmers competition at 150 meters; Water Sports: beach volley, football/youth academy, kung fu Pogradec etc
An exhibition and Artisan Fair is planned after midday in the Park, where everyone can see and buy some artworks made by Pogradeci artisans.
For the lovers of photography, will be a special event. The well known photographer Ardian Fezollari opens at Art Gallery the exhibition "The days of Pogradec', at 19.00h.
In the evening, everyone can enjoy poetry performance and music in the City Square.
It will be also a symbolic closing ceremony by the Mayor Kapri at 21.00h in a festive atmosphere


Liqeni i Ohrit është unik dhe ndaj ka një ditë speciale kushtuar atij. 21 Qershori ëshë Dita e Liqenit të Ohrit dhe festohet nga bashkia e Pogradecit, Ohrit dhe Strugës. Vendimi për ta deklaruar këtë  ditë si “Dita e Liqenit të Ohrit” është marrë para 17 vitesh në Shkurt të vitit 2000 nga Bordi i Përbashkët Menaxhues i Liqenit të Ohrit.
Në këtë ditë Bashkia e Pogradecit do të hapë sezonin turistik për këtë vit. Aktivitetet do të drejtohen nga kryetari i Bashkisë së Pogradecit, Z. Eduard Kapri, të cilat do të nisin që në orën 9:00 të mëngjesit deri në orët e vona të mbrëmjes.
Do të zhvillohet dhe një tur në disa zona nga Lin në Pogradec. Aktivitetet do të fillojnë në qendrën e qytetit, ku një program i veçantë është dedikuar fëmijëve, me shfaqje me klloun, vallëzime të animuara, vizatime në fytyrë, lojëra dhe argëtime të tjera.
Aktivitetet do të vazhdojnë në Odeonin e Qytetit me festimet zyrtare të kësaj dite, ku tre kryetarët e bashkive të Pogradecit, Ohrit dhe Strugës do të mbajnë një fjalim për këtë ditë.
Festival ii kulinarisë do të jetë pjesë e aktiviteteve si gjithmonë.  Do të ketë sporte ajrore, me shfaqje aeronautike në qiellin e qytetit të Pogradecit.
Aktivitete sportive të tjera sportive do të jenë: shëtitje me biçikleta nga Lini deri në urën e Liqenit, konkursi i notarëve deri në 150 metra, sporte ujore, volejboll në plazh, futboll, kung-fu etj.
Në mesditë është planifikuar ekspozita e artizanëve që do të mbahet në park, ku të gjithë mund të shohin dhe të blejnë vepra nga artizanët e Pogradecit.
Për të apasionuarit pas fotografisë, do të ketë një event të veçantë. Fotografi i mirënjohur, Ardian Fezollari hap ekspozitën “Ditët e Pogradecit”, në orën 7 të pasdites.
Në darkë, kushdo mund të shijoj recitime dhe muzikë në qendrën e qytetit.
Në orën 21:00 do të jetë mbyllja simbolike e eventit nga kryebashkiaku Kapri në një atmosferë festive.

Monday, June 12, 2017

UNESCO mission recommends halting the construction projects of the Galičica ski resort

From 9 to 14 April 2017, a joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission visited the World Heritage property of Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid region (the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

The report with findings from this mission is available at

The mission discussed with the authorities the overall state of conservation of the property and provided technical assistance on the scope and development of a SEA, which should comprehensively assess the potential individual and cumulative impacts of all above-mentioned projects on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property.

The 2017 mission concluded that some of the proposals for large-scale infrastructure and construction projects, such as sub-sections (a) and (e) of the A3 road and the Galičica ski resort within the property could lead to irreversible changes to the property, in combination with the developments and transformations that have already occurred in the urban settlements and lakeshore since its inscription. The mission strongly recommended to completely abandon the Galičica ski centre project, keep the internal national park zoning as is, and consider developing ecotourism options that would not negatively impact the property.

Therefore, it is recommended that the Committee request the State Party to halt the construction projects of the Galičica ski resort, as well as the sub-sections (a) and (e) of the A3 road. It is also recommended that the Committee reminds the State Party that all projects including those submitted to major donors such as the European Union which may have potential negative impacts on the OUV of the property, should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies for review in conformity with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines. 

Considering the level of threats to the property, the mission identified a set of recommendations, some of which need to be prioritized and fulfilled over the next two years, in addition to those adopted in 2016 that still need to be fulfilled. The findings of the mission suggest that the overall state of conservation can be considered as vulnerable, and if the priority recommendations are not implemented within the suggested two-year time frame (i.e. in 2019), the property may meet the criteria for inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger. 

It is therefore recommended that the Committee request the State Party to submit, by 1 February 2018, a progress report on the implementation of these priority recommendations for review by the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies. If in their assessment insufficient progress is being made, the property will be examined by the Committee at its 42nd session in 2018.

Monday, June 5, 2017

World Environment Day- UNESCO message for 2017

5th June is the World Environment Day, a day when UN and other organisations are encouraging worldwide awareness and action for the protection of our environment.

On occasion of this Day, Ms Irina Bokova, the director General of UNESCO have a message to deliver on how to protect nature and Unesco natural world heritage. The topic for this year is "Connecting People with Nature"

Here is her full message on This Day:

It may seem hard to believe now, but, fifty years ago, it was thought the best way to protect nature was to make it off-limits to the human population…

Today, we know better.

We now know that the closer the relationship between people and their natural environment the more likely people are to appreciate the importance of nature and its biodiversity, heritage and water, for their personal well-being and the planet’s future.

This spirit guides all UNESCO’s action, embodied in a unique global network of UNESCO-designated sites, designed to bring people closer to nature, drawing a new map of the world -- a map of unity and peace, beyond borders, between women and men and the environment around them.

UNESCO Biosphere Reserves, UNESCO Global Geoparks and World Heritage sites – often overlying key strategic surface or groundwater resources -- bring together more than 2,000 exceptional sites around the world. All of them employ local people and have their doors wide open to the public, because we know now this is the surest path to more inclusive and sustainable development, respectful of the boundaries of the planet.
Geoparks are open-air history books that take us back millions of years in time. Biosphere reserves are places where local communities tackle development challenges by crafting new social and economic pathways to sustainability. Geoparks and Biosphere Reserves combine conservation with education and innovative approaches to sustainable local development, such as ecotourism and organic agriculture.

All this is led forward locally, but these sites fit into a unique global network that allow ideas, experience and best practices to be shared far afield. Respect for nature comes with understanding, which is why UNESCO launched an educational kit on biodiversity for schoolchildren.

Water connects people to nature, and many UNESCO Cultural World Heritage sites are examples of how humanity has managed water to obtain it, store it, harness its power and conserve it. Look no further than the aqueducts, water gardens, and mills that mark our landscapes.

Today, I invite everyone to take time out from busy lives and to visit one of UNESCO’s sites. For a moment of contemplation, immerse yourself in a Persian Garden in Iran, where water plays an astonishing symbolic and ornamental role. In Tumbler Ridge Global Geopark in Canada, go for a swim in crystal-clear alpine lakes and sleep under the stars. Or go trekking in Jordan’s Mujib Biosphere Reserve, which lies 420 m below sea level in places, thanks to its proximity to the Dead Sea.

On this World Environment Day, I call all countries to make the most of UNESCO designated sites -- most of all, I call on women and men everywhere to connect with the nature around them that gives beauty, meaning and harmony to the lives we lead.