First UNESCO World Heritage Site created in Central Asia
UNESCO has included the site “Saryarka - steppes and lakes of
Eight regions, located in
“Saryarka - steppes and lakes of Northern Kazakhstan” is the first territory in
“UNESCO now protects lakes that are stopover points to many migratory birds flying from Africa, Europe and South Asia to their breeding places in Western and Eastern Siberia, including the extremely rare Siberian white crane, the Dalmatian pelican, Pallas’s fish eagle are now under the UNESCO protection”, says Olga Pereladova, head of WWF Central Asia Programme.
The new World Heritage Site is also home to over half the species of the region’s steppe flora and the Saiga antelope, formerly an abundant species much reduced by poaching. The horns of Saiga antelopes are illegally sold to
The biggest population of imperial eagle in the region and the most northern nesting place of the Greater Flamingo in the world are now also under the UNESCO protection.
The preparation of the documents for the creation of the World Heritage object in the
“It took time to prepare the documents and take into consideration all the recommendations of UNESCO. Gradually new people and organizations joined our work. The decision of UNESCO is the common victory of all those people who long for keeping the richness and variety of Central Asian nature”, says WWF project leader in Kazakhstan Tatiana Bragina, who has devoted almost 30 years of her life to Naurzum State Nature Reserve and began the preparation of the documents for including it in the World Heritage List in 2001.