The 20-th session of the General Assembly of the States Parties to the 1972 Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage took place on November 18 2015 at the UNESCO headquarters. The elections to the World Heritage Committee were held during the session and the Republic of Azerbaijan obtained 115 votes out of 156 States which participated at the elections and was elected to the Committee for 4 years’ term for the first time in its history. Among other elected countries to the Committee-Cuba, Indonesia, Tunis, Kuwait, and other countries can be mentioned.
In this regard, the significant role of the First Lady of Azerbaijan, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva should be highlighted as part this victory achieved at the elections. The activities of Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva aimed at promoting rich tangible and intangible cultural heritage of Azerbaijan at the international level played essential role in this victory.
The World Heritage Committee composed of 21 States Parties to the Convention is one of the important bodies of UNESCO and is responsible for the inscription of cultural and natural heritage sites into the World Heritage List.
The election to the Committee will allow Azerbaijan not only -to increase its role in protecting the world heritage, but also will play a big role in protecting and promoting its own cultural and natural heritage.Currently Azerbaijan has two inscribed sites in the World Heritage List-the Walled City of Baku with Shirvanshah’s Palace and Maiden Tower (2000), as well as the Gobustan Rock Art Cultural Landscape (2007