Showing posts with label Albania. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Albania. Show all posts

Monday, April 10, 2017

Albanian Ministry of Culture is committed to success of Lake Ohrid Project


"The Ministry of Culture is the lead state institution responsible for the protection, conservation, improvement and promotion of cultural heritage in Albania. In line with its institutional competences the ministry had taken several important initiatives, programmes and projects to protect and promote cultural heritage, develop and support public–private partnerships and strengthen and intensify regional and international cooperation.

The ministry’s new vision, approach and policy towards cultural heritage is reflected in the decision-making processes related to the country’s cultural heritage. From 2014–2016, new protected areas of cultural monuments were adopted, new historic centres were approved by Decisions of the Council of Ministers and several major rehabilitation projects implemented or are still in process. The new vision and approach of the ministry towards cultural heritage in this period have been put into practice in the important project Towards strengthened governance of the shared transboundary natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region.

Since the beginning of the project the ministry, the Institute of Cultural Monuments and the Korca Regional Directorate of National Culture have participated in all project activities and actively contributed in the preparation of the required documentation in line with the recommendations of ICCROM, ICOMOS and IUCN. The National Restoration Council has acted promptly by approving the proposed boundaries of the potential World Heritage property and the protected area of the early Christian church on the Lin Peninsula. In June 2015, by proposal of the Ministry of Culture, the historical center of Pogradec was approved by Decision of the Council of Ministers. Currently, our experts are working on finalization of a draft management plan, while at the same time a group of specialists—mainly architects and restorers—are involved in preparation of guidelines for the maintenance and rehabilitation of the traditional build heritage on the Albanian part of the Lake Ohrid region. Preparation of the nomination dossier for World Heritage Inscription of the Albanian part of the region is the final objective to be achieved within this project.

This project has contributed not only in improving transboundary cooperation with our Macedonian partners, but also in sharing knowledge, experiences, challenges and difficulties jointly faced in protecting and safeguarding the cultural and natural values of the Lake Ohrid region.

World Heritage status, as the final objective of this project, does not mean only prestige and advantage: World Heritage sites belong to us all, irrespective of the territory on which they are located, which means also responsibilities, challenges, difficulties and issues to be dealt with.

Aware of the importance of this status and taking into account the distinctive natural and cultural values that makes this region unique, the finalization of this project will open a new long-term process jointly managed by the institutions responsible and communities living there."



Yours Sincerely, 
Mirela Kumbaro Furxhi, Minister of Culture, Albania
 

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Parathënie nga Ministrja e Kulturës për Projektin e Liqenit të Ohrit
 
Ministria e Kulturës është institucioni drejtues i Qeverisë, përgjegjës për mbrojtjen, ruajtjen, përmirësimin dhe promovimin e trashëgimisë kulturore në Shqipëri. Në përputhje me kompetencat e saj institucionale, Ministria ka ndërmarrë një sërë iniciativash të rëndësishme, programe dhe projekte për të mbrojtur dhe promovuar trashëgiminë kulturore, për të zhvilluar dhe mbështetur partneritetet publike-private dhe për të forcuar e intensifikuar bashkëpunimin rajonal dhe ndërkombëtar.

Vizioni i ri i Ministrisë, qasja dhe politika ndaj trashëgimisë kulturore reflektohet në proceset vendimarrëse që lidhen me trashëgiminë kulturore të vendit. Duke nisur nga periudha 2014-2016, zonat e mbrojtura të monumenteve të kulturës janë zgjeruar, qendrat e reja historike janë aprovuar nga vendimet e Këshillit të Minisrave dhe një sërë projektesh të mëdha rehabilitimi të zbatuara në mënyrë të suksesshme ose që janë ende në proces. Vizioni i ri dhe qasja e Ministrisë ndaj trashëgimisë kulturore në këtë periudhë është zbatuar në praktikë në projektin e rëndësishëm “Drejt një qeverisjeje të përbashkët të trashëgimisë natyrore dhe kulturore ndërkufitare të rajonit të Liqenit të Ohrit”.

Që nga fillimi i projektit, Ministria, Instituti i Monumenteve të Kulturës dhe Drejtoria Rajonale e Korçës për kulturën kanë marrë pjesë në të gjitha projektet dhe kanë kontribuar në mënyrë aktive për përgatitjen e dokumentacionit të kërkuar në përputhje me rekomandimet e ICCROM, ICOMOS dhe IUCN. Këshilli Kombëtar i Restaurimeve ka vepruar menjëherë duke miratuar kufijtë e propozuar të pasurisë potenciale për Trashëgimi Botërore dhe zonën e mbrojtur të Kishës së hershme kristiane në Gadishullin e Linit.

Në qershor 2015 me propozim të Ministrisë së Kulturës, u miratua nga Këshilli i Ministrave dhe Qendra Historike e Pogradecit. Aktualisht, ekspertët tanë po punojnë për finalizimin e draftit të planit të menaxhimit, ndërkohë që i njëjti grup i specialistëve, kryesisht arkitektë dhe restauratorë janë përfshirë në përgatitjen e udhëzimeve për ruajtjen dhe rehabilitimin e trashëgimisë tradicionale të ndërtuar tashmë në pjesën shqiptare të rajonit të Liqenit të Ohrit. Përgatitja e Dosjes së Nominimit për regjistrimin si Pasuri Botërore të pjesës shqiptare të rajonit të Liqenit të Ohrit, është objektivi final që duhet të arrihet brenda këtij projekti. Ky projekt ka kontribuar jo vetëm në përmirësimin e bashkëpunimit ndërkufitar me partnerët maqedonas, por gjithashtu në ndarjen e njohurive, eksperiencave, sfidave dhe vështirësive që përballohen më mirë së bashku me qëllim mbrojtjen dhe ruajtjen e vlerave kulturore dhe natyrore të Liqenit të Ohrit.

Statusi ‘Pasuri Botërore’, si objektiv final i projektit, nuk do të thotë vetëm prestigj dhe avantazh. Vendi i trashëgimisë botërore na përket të gjithëve, pavarësisht nga territori ku ndodhet, që do të thotë gjithashtu përgjegjshmëri, sfida, vështirësi dhe çështje më të cilat duhet të përballemi.

Të ndërgjegjshëm për rëndësinë e këtij statusi, dhe duke marrë parasysh vlerat e dukshme kulturore dhe natyrore që e bëjnë këtë rajon unik, mendojmë se finalizimi i këtij procesi do të hapë një proces të ri afatgjatë të menaxhuar bashkërisht nga institucionet përgjegjëse dhe komunitetet që jetojnë në rajonin e Liqenit të Ohrit.

Sinqerisht
Mirela Kumbaro Furxhi
Ministre e Kulturës, Shqipëri

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Tourism/ Pogradec, in harmony with nature

Pogradec is one of the most charming tourism destinations in Albania set on the shores of Lake Ohrid. The journey to Pogradec is always inspiring. The more you travel here, the more you become addicted to the city. Travelling over Qafe Thane, reaching the pass and begining the descent down to Lake Ohrid and the beautiful village of Lin with its magnificent scenery surrounded by hills unfolds itself like a book to the eye of the tousists. The beauty and tranquility of the lake move your soul. Once in the city, a long promenade, invites you for a long walk. Pogradec is very welcoming, and people are among the most friendly in Albania, the lake has softened their hearts.. The city was home to many of the country's famous writers and poets: Lasgush Poradeci and Mitrush Kuteli, and lately Luan Starova and painters Anastas Kostandini(Taso), Gjergji Lako, Gentian Zeka, Vangjo Vasili and Ilir Dhima.

Cultural heritage
In the west side of Lin pennisula you can visit the paleochristian church, a National Cultural Monument of Albania included within the site on the UNESCO Tentative List of Albania for the Natural and Cultural Heritage of Ohrid Region (Albania). The Illyrian Tombs of Selca e Poshtme (40km from Pogradec) is another important site to visit. The tombs rest among the remains of the ancient city of Pelion, an Illyrian settlement of the Enchele tribe and the residence of Illyrian kings. In 1996, Albania proposed the Royal tombs of Selca e Poshtme on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List. Other archaeological sites include: Other churches to visit are the church of Saint Dimitri (small Orthodox church of 1154 AD) and the church of Saint Marena ( Orthodox church rebuilt in 1744).

What to see
Lin Village and its mosaic are a natural first stop on a jounrey to Pogradec. The village lies in a quiet and picturesque bay, with beautiful houses with red tiled roofs
Drilon National Park, is also an essential place to see in Pogradec with crystal clear springs that supply the beautiful channels overhung with trees and ornamental plants. This was the holiday home for the former dictator Enver Hoxha, whose villa is now a hotel and restaurant.
Tushemisht Village and its newly renovated centre is not to be missed. The blogger Yomadic refers to it as Albania's "small Venice" full of canals with clear waters emerging from the mountain that ironically is named "The Dry Mountain".

What to do
Pogradec is perfect for a relaxing holiday. Peak months are July and August, when the lakeside teems with beach lovers in the sun. Pedal boats are available, and canoeing and kayaking activities are growing in popularity.. Off season, the city goes back to its tranquility, and is ideal for walking and meditation. In winter the scenes are very panoramic, often spectacular with snow covering the mountains, set above a background of green and blue. One of the highlights of Pogradec is its delicious cuisine.

Monday, February 29, 2016

3rd Transboundary Platform Meeting for the safeguarding of the Lake Ohrid region will take place on 7 March in Pogradec

The third Transboundary Platform Meeting of the project “Towards strengthened governance of the shared transboundary natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region” will take place on 7 March 2016. This third meeting on transboundary cooperation is part of a European Union and UNESCO initiative aiming to reinforce conservation and sustainable development through management effectiveness on both sides of the Lake Ohrid.

The third Transboundary Platform Meeting will take place in Pogradec, Albania. Representatives from the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Environment, representatives from the National Agency of Protected Areas, representatives from the local governments around the lake, representatives from the Advisory Bodies (ICOMOS and IUCN) as well as UNESCO will get together to pursue their work in establishing a viable cooperation platform.

This Transboundary Platform Meeting aims more specifically to present and discuss opportunities in existing transboundary processes for monitoring of the environment and biodiversity which contribute to the safeguarding and the management of the Lake Ohrid region.

Home to an exceptional biodiversity reservoir of Europe, Lake Ohrid is one of the world’s oldest lakes. With remains of some of the first human settlements in Europe, the lake is also an important spiritual centre with one of the oldest Slav monasteries built in the 9th century, making it an important religious centre for the region. Natural, cultural and spiritual, the heritage of the region is truly remarkable.

The area, situated in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, is inscribed on the World Heritage List as the property “Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid region” since 1979. Today, the addition of the remaining third of the Albanian section of the lake to the World Heritage Property would greatly enhance the integrity of this protection. Transboundary Platform Meetings have been designed to facilitate management and collaboration between Albania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and aim among others to provide management efficiency strategies for the potential transboundary extension of this mixed World Heritage property.

The area is protected through a number of national and international measures, but unadequate water and solid waste management and illegal building activities have an impact on the integrity of the site today. More information about the Lake Ohrid region can be found at: whc.unesco.org/en/lake-ohrid-region/

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Protecting Lake Ohrid, oldest lake in South-Eastern Europe

Lake Ohrid, one of the world’s oldest lakes situated in south-eastern Europe, stands out as one of the largest reserves of biodiversity and some of the oldest human settlements in the continent. The convergence of distinctive natural values with the quality and diversity of its cultural, material and spiritual heritage makes this region truly unique.

Two-thirds of Lake Ohrid is inscribed on the World Heritage List on the Macedonian side of the lake as the mixed World Heritage property “Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid region”. Now time has come to join our efforts and take over our responsibilities to extend World Heritage status to the remaining third of the lake located in Albania.
The project “Towards strengthened governance of the shared transboundary natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region” has been designed to address the main factors affecting the Lake Ohrid region through identifying and safeguarding the main natural and cultural assets of the Lake and improving transboundary cooperation and management. For more see: 
Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid region

The region’s efforts to balance conservation with sustainable development are laid out in the 2005 bilateral Agreement between the two countries for the Protection and Sustainable Development of Lake Ohrid and its Watershed. The project is coordinated by UNESCO in partnership with the authorities of both countries, as well as the three Advisory Bodies to the World Heritage Committee (ICOMOS International, IUCN and ICCROM), and is financed by the European Union (EUR 1,700,000) with the co-financing by the government of Albania (EUR 170,000).

  • Overall project activities include:
  • the reinforcement of transboundary cooperation between Albania and Macedonia
  • the establishment of integrated management mechanisms;
  • and capacity building on management effectiveness.

Activities also aim to identify and safeguard cultural and natural assets, to provide technical assistance to national authorities for the preparation of a transboundary World Heritage property extension file, as well as to implement a waste awareness campaign.

Source: http://whc.unesco.org/en/lake-ohrid-region

Friday, February 12, 2016

Albanian Parliament has passed a 10-year moratorium to save forests


The Albanian Parliament has passed a 10-year moratorium on chopping down trees for industry or export purposes. The law drafted by the Ministry of Environment allows local authorities to approve limited wood-cutting for heating. Albania's 1.4 million hectares (3.5 million acres) of forests have been savagely cut or burnt over the past 26 years since the fall of the communist regime, with an average of 2.5 million trees chopped down each year. Minister of Environment Lefter Koka said that this radical decision has come after measures failed to stop the loss of woodland, which has contributed to the flooding the country experienced in recent years.


Source: http://www.mjedisi.gov.al/al/newsroom/deklarata-per-shtyp/hyn-ne-fuqi-moratoriumi-ne-pyje-ne-republiken-e-shqiperise

Friday, February 5, 2016

EU and UNESCO join forces for the natural and cultural heritage of the transboundary Lake Ohrid region

"Towards strengthened governance of the shared transboundary natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region" is the name of the 36-month project co-financed by the European Union and the Ministry of Environment of Albania aimed at the protection and sustainable development of the Lake Ohrid region.

Lake Ohrid is one of the oldest lakes in the world, embracing numerous exceptional natural and cultural features. The region’s striving for balancing conservation with sustainable development is reflected in the bilateral Agreement for the Protection and Sustainable Development of Lake Ohrid and its Watershed ratified in 2005.

The European Union has partnered with UNESCO in this joint management project aimed at supporting the efforts of Albania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to sustainably develop the fragile Lake Ohrid region shared between the two Governments.

The project is designed to address the main threats affecting the natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region. It is aimed at strengthening transboundary cooperation over the region’s cultural and natural heritage, helping recognize and profile the trans-boundary area by assessing its values and sustainable development opportunities, improving capacities for the effective management of natural and cultural heritage, supporting integrated management planning based on active cross-sectorial cooperation and public participation. It will have a particular focus on building lasting cross-sectoral cooperation, especially in the fields of sustainable tourism development, and awareness-raising for natural and cultural heritage protection and on the importance of appropriate waste management.

The project also aims to support the efforts of the national authorities in the framework of the World Heritage Upstream process to explore innovative approaches for the preparation of nomination files, and in particular for the extension to Albania of the World Heritage property “Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid Region”, already recognized in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1979.

The duration of the project is 36 months with an overall budget of 2.64 million USD is funded by the European Union with a contribution of approximately 2.4 million USD (1.7 million EUR). The 10% co-financing Agreement between the Albanian Ministry of Environment and UNESCO is currently under preparation. The project will be carried out by UNESCO in close partnership with the Governments of Albania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, as well as the three Advisory Bodies to the World Heritage Convention: ICOMOS International, IUCN and ICCROM.

The source: http://whc.unesco.org/en/events/1189/