World Heritage beech forests in Slovakia still not sufficiently protected; WWF
Bratislava – Lack of a strong legislative mandate for conservation threatens the unique value of Carpathian primeval beech forests in Slovakia, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, according to a report released by the Supreme Auditing Department. WWF warns that under the current circumstances, the site’s inscription in the World Heritage list may be threatened.
Continuing inappropriate management, extensive logging and hunting in the Slovak forest threaten the whole UNESCO site, which also includes areas in the Ukraine and Germany, according to the audit. Protecting the Poloniny National Park in Slovakia along with other Central and Eastern European forests has been an ongoing struggle for UNESCO and the WWF.
After strong criticism from the UNESCO World Heritage Committee at its annual meeting in 2017, in February 2018 the Slovak government submitted a report with improvements and protection measures to preserve the site.
“The report is too general, unsatisfying and inadequate to respond to the challenges and threats indicated in the UNESCO World Heritage Committee’s decision,” said Miroslava Plassmann, Director of WWF-DCP Slovakia.