Blue and John Crow Mountains (Jamaica)
—The site encompasses a rugged and extensively forested mountainous region in the south-east of Jamaica, which provided refuge first for the indigenous Tainos fleeing slavery and then for Maroons (escaped African slaves). They resisted the European colonial system in this isolated region by establishing a network of trails, hiding places and settlements, which form the Nanny Town Heritage Route. The forests offered the Maroons everything they needed for their survival. They developed strong spiritual connections with the mountains, still manifest through the intangible cultural legacy of, for example, religious rites, traditional medicine and dances. The site is also a biodiversity hotspot for the Caribbean Islands with a high proportion of endemic plant species, especially lichens, mosses and certain flowering plants.
The Inscription of sites will continue through 5 July. The committee will end its 39th session on 8 July.

Address by Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO on the occasion of the opening of the 39th Session of the World HeritageCommitteeBonn, 28 June 2015 Excellency Professor Maria Böhmer, Chairperson of the World Heritage Committee, Mr President of the General Conference, Mr Chair of the Executive Board, Distinguished Members of the World Heritage Committee, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, First of all, I would like to ask Professor Böhmer to convey our deepest gratitude to Her Excellency Chancellor Angela Merkel for the powerful message we have just heard. This is a strong message of commitment, a broad vision of culture as a tool to build peace and sustainable development, a perfect opening for this 39th session of the World Heritage Committee. For more than four decades, the World Heritage Committee has met every year, bringing together governments and experts, to set the pace for protecting the world’s cultural and natural sites of universal outstanding value. We have done so in times of peace, to celebrate the power of culture to foster dialogue and development, mutual understanding and tolerance. We have done so in times of turbulence, when heritage is under attack and people are deprived from their fundamental rights and history. DG/2015/128 - Page 2 Heritage is under attack today. In Syria, in Iraq, in Libya, in Yemen, in Mali, we see the brutal and deliberate destruction of heritage on an unprecedented scale. Mesopotamia, the cradle of human civilization, is being burnt to ashes. Mosul, Nimrud, Hatra, Aleppo – all of them bear witness to the wealth of Islamic wisdom, to the dialogue of cultures in human history, and they being bombed and destroyed with jackhammers. World Heritage sites are used for military purposes. Illegal excavations and trafficking of cultural objects are depriving people of their identity, accelerating social disintegration, and contributing to the financing of terrorism. All this is a call to action. This calls on us to reaffirm our commitment to the principles and values upon which the World Convention was adopted, in 1972. This is a reminder of our responsibility to always recall that the destruction of heritage is an integral part of humanitarian and security crises, and that its protection cannot be delinked from the protection of human lives. It is our responsibility to bring Governments and experts together, to respond to the new threat of violent extremism and halt cultural cleansing. It is especially fitting Germany is chairing the World Heritage Committee this year -- I wish to convey my deep thanks to the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany for hosting and organizing this 39th session of the World Heritage Committee, most especially Her Excellency Professor Maria Böhmer for her leadership. DG/2015/128 - Page 3 German experts and institutions are acting on their commitment and expertise to protect the cultural heritage of humanity, including in the Middle East –- from the Pergamon Museum to the German Archaeological Institute. It is a German philosopher, Hans Jonas, who introduced into modern thought the idea of collective responsibility to future generations -- the idea that we should behave as “guardians of the planet”. Germany was among the first countries to ratify the World Heritage Convention, and this is the second time the Committee holds its annual session in Germany, after Berlin in 1995. Last month in New York, at the initiative of Germany and Iraq, co-sponsored by more than 90 states, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution to mobilize States for “the protection of the cultural heritage of Iraq”. I believe this marks a turning point in international mobilization, which we must take forward together. Tomorrow, we will launch the Global Coalition for the Protection of Heritage and the Chairs of all UNESCO Cultural Conventions will meet to join forces and coordinate actions… We are building strong momentum – we must build on this together.