UNESCO Delays Decision on Cathedral | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 14.07.2005
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UNESCO Delays Decision on Cathedral

Whether Cologne cathedral, one of Europe's masterpieces of Gothic architecture, is removed from the prestigious list of world heritage sites hinges on a report UNESCO requested from Germany, an official said Wednesday. The UNESCO World Heritage Committee meeting in Durban, South Africa, on Wednesday asked the German government to submit a report on the Cologne Cathedral to address concerns over the recent construction of skycrapers. "They were not satisfied that the Germans had provided adequate guarantees that they would refrain from building skyscrapers," said the official who attended the meeting but asked not to be named. "Germany will have to provide a report by the end of this year outlining its intentions for the surrounding of the site," he told AFP. "Based on that information, the committee will decide whether to delist the property altogether from the world heritage site." Built over seven centuries until 1880, the Cologne Cathedral was proclaimed a world heritage site in 1996 but last year the UNESCO committee put in on the list of endangered sites. The World Heritage List currently contains 788 sites -- 611 of them manmade, 154 natural and 23 a combination of the two -- spread across 134 countries.

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