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Macedonia by Gzime Memedi

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    Natural and Cultural heritage of the Ohrid region


    Ohrid is the eight largest city in Macedonia and the largest city on Lake Ohrid.  In the year 1979 and 1980 the city of Ohrid and the Lake Ohrid were accepted as cultural and natural world heritage cites by UNESCO . Ohrid and region is the 29 in the world, included in the list of mixed natural and cultural heritage [1]. The city of Ohrid is known as a center of Slavian culture since it is believed that the Slavik languages and writing, literature were coming out of  Ohrid [2]. It is the oldest human settlements in Europe dating from 7th and 19th century, it has the oldest Slav monastery St Pantelejmon and more than 800 Byzantine style icons [3]. The most attractive thing is that it has 365 churches one for each day of the year [3]. The city has preserved the ancient urban architecture and all the monuments  in the best way. The city is also known as the main tourism attraction in Macedonia visited every year by thousands of foreign visitors.



    Managerial challenges

    The mixed property of the city of Ohrid and region was  untouched natural environment on the shores of the lake, and  also the  cultural heritage monuments were well preserved when they were registered for the first time in the list by UNESCO[4]. According  to a monitoring mission which was carried out by UNESCO , there were some few unwanted steps taken by the locals of the neighboring municipality. At the time the mission noted some changes in the natural heritage part of the lake, were the neighboring city of Struga was increasing the construction in the shores of the Lake [4]. They concluded that the economic and demographic developments are the main threat on the preservation of the cultural and natural heritages of the Ohrid and region[4]. However the mission came up with some  recommendations such as: they were calling for a special legal framework, strengthening the management, and preparation of a Spatial plan for the area and the towns[4]. How this recommendations can  be practiced it depends from the politicians and the  municipalities council who are responsible for the Ohrid and region. In November this year the council of the municipality of Ohrid recommended a plan for building a Hotel close to the Lake Ohrid within the buffering zone of the UNESCO. However  the plan is still not approved from the  ministry of ecology who are responsible for the Lake Ohrid. This mean that if they will accept this plan it is possible that Macedonia will lose the natural world heritage site.






    [1] UNESCO ``Ohrid Region`` [2014.11.12]

    [2] Organzation of World Heritage Cities [2014.11.11]

    [3] Exploring Macedonia [2014.11.12]

    [4] Report on the Advisory Mission toThe World Heritage Property “Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid region”, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, from 11 to 13 December 2013                         

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    Comments (4)

    Viewing 4 of 4 comments: view all
    Interesting case, however, I think that the managerial issues needs to be addressed from the more critical point of view. Are those claims from the monitoring mission eligible? Are there currently any strong governmental structures/institutions that are able to support this process and really implement the policies that would allow to mitigate the negative tendencies that were noticed in the report? You have stated them, but were unable to give us a hint on how the present situation in Macedonia look like, do you think anyone cares? Why making to the WHS at first place than? Best, Albina
    Posted 22:43, 21 Nov 2014
    Hey Gzime,
    It was nice to read something about Ohrid :)
    I know how Ohrid is beautiful, but most of the people from the class don't have idea, and unfortunately didn't have chance to see it at the presentation as well, thus I think it would be nice to add some nice pictures. And the oldest human settlements in Europe cannot be from that period, so I guess you missed to write that is B.C. or something. Maybe it would be also interesting to know something more about those management recommendations, did they fulfill some of them. I hope this will be helpful :)
    Best regards,
    Posted 13:58, 22 Nov 2014
    Hi Albina I have really missed to mention the present situation for this heritage site. As I have added above in the text, in the beginning of this month there is a plan recommended for building a Hotel close to the Lake Ohrid, and it is everything on the hand of Ministry of Ecology if they will accept this plan or not. Obviously in Macdonia the government controls everything and also this heritage site and if they think that they will have profit any from building Hotels in this area they will do it. Hope this was helpful. Best Gzime. edited 01:42, 27 Nov 2014
    Posted 01:30, 27 Nov 2014
    Hi Vladimir, thank you for the comment I added the picture :).I wrote that Ohrid is one of the most ancient human settlements in Europe,since it contains many monuments from the Bronze Age and the Hellenistic period and its traces of the material culture of more than 5,000 years ago. When it comes to the management recommendations it is hard to conclude something, since the Ohrid region it is given more importance as an tourist attraction rather than as a heritage site, so the government does not give a high importance to those recommendations. Best Gzime.
    Posted 01:42, 27 Nov 2014
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