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‘Samaria Gorge’ could be struck off UNESCO list for first time in history! (warning letters)

Unbelievable Greek state incompetence

The UNESCO designated Samaria Gorge, located on the island of Crete is in danger of being expelled from the UN organisation’s list of natures due to the bureaucracy and the incompetence of state services. The complete lack of coordination between the Greek state administration services could lead to the national park being struck of the UNESCO list, according to the President of the Greek National Committee MAB/UNESCO, Michalis Skoullos. As Flashnews.gr reports, UNESCO sent a letter of warning to the Greek state revealing the park was at risk of being dropped from the relevant international list, unless the Greek Ministry for Environment proceeded with the legal guarantee of the park and the surrounding areas. The Ministry was aware of the risk, as UNESCO had sent a first letter of warning two years ago! The matter could have been settled through a simple Ministerial decree, something the Greek state failed to do. UNESCO officials are in Greece for the promotion of of including Samothraki in the list of the organisation’s Man and Biosphere Programme (MAB), where the Samaria Gorge belongs, and on the sidelines of their actions the matter of the Samaria Gorge was discussed. Although the UNESCO officials  expressed their positive attitudes to the Greek case, they made it clear that they were unable to bypass regulations and expected the Greek state to take some action. If the Gorge is written off the MAB UNESCO list, it will the first time in history the organisation has done so. UNESCO says a mere recognition by the Greek state of the status of the Gorge and the surrounding areas as protected areas would suffice to avoid the embarrassment.

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