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UNESCO Visited Proposed Heritage Sites
February 15th, 2007

A number of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) guests took a two-day tour of three venues nominated by the Indonesian government as potential World Heritage Sites. The prominent guests included Indonesian Ambassador/Permanent Delegate to UNESCO Aman M. Wirakartakusumah, along with UNESCO ambassadors Muhyi Al Kateeb (Iraq), Ziad Aldrees (Saudi Arabia), Ina Marciuliontve (Lithuania), Abdulrazzak Al Nafisi (Kuwait). They were joined by UNESCO Jakarta’s director Hubert Geizen and program specialist for culture Himalchuli Gurung.

The terraced rice fields of Jatiluwih, located some 80 kilometers north of Denpasar in Tabanan, was the first sites visited by these UNESCO team.

Jatiluwih is among the three Balinese sites that have been nominated for world heritage status; the other two are the Tukad Pakerisan riverbanks in Gianyar and Taman Ayun temple in Mengwi, Badung regency.

At 300 hectares, the rice paddy is one of the finest examples of the traditional Balinese subak agricultural system, which has been practiced for hundreds of years. This rice was planted using an organic farming system, which uses no chemical pesticides or fertilizers. This vast rice field offers a beautiful panorama that will mesmerize every visitor.

The next stop was Taman Ayun temple in Badung regency. Built in the mid-1700s, Pura Taman Ayun is the second largest temple in Bali, and one of the finest and most elaborate examples of Hindu temples on the island.

On second day of the tour, visitors went to Tukad Pakerisan in Gianyar regency which is renowned as the island’s richest archaeological site. They visited three of the eight temples/historical sites in the area, including Pura Goa Gajah, Pura Pegulingan and Pura Tirta Empul.

According to The Jakarta Post, on the sidelines of the tour, Marciuliontve said that the designation of a World Heritage Site was a difficult process.

“It requires understanding and a clear management system — short, medium and long-term periods,” she said.

The UNESCO World Heritage Committee would make the final decision after reviewing the Indonesian proposal objectively and transparently.



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