At least seven new sites have been included in Unesco's World Heritage List and that includes the hidden Christian sites in Japan's Nagasaki region, the ancient city of Qalhat in Oman and Al-Ahsa Oasis, an evolving cultural landscape in Saudi Arabia.
The names of the new World Heritage Sites were announced on Friday and Saturday afternoon by the 42nd session of the World Heritage Committee. The committee will inscribe more sites in the upcoming meetings that will be held from June 24 to July 4.
The first site to be inscribed was Thimlich Ohinga archaeological site in Kenya. The site, which is located north-west of the Migori town, is a dry-stone walled settlement said to be built in the 16th century CE. It is the largest and best preserved of these traditional enclosures, according to the Unesco site.
Al-Ahsa Oasis is a traditional oasis historical region in the eastern Arabian Peninsula. The site represents "traces of continued human settlement in the Gulf region from the Neolithic to the present, as can be seen from remaining historic fortresses, mosques, wells, canals and other water management systems," Unesco site said.
The ancient city of Qalhat is located in the east coast of the Sultanate of Oman. "The city developed as a major port on the east coast of Arabia between the 11th and 15th centuries CE, during the reign of the Hormuz princes. Today it bears unique archaeological testimony to the trade links between the east coast of Arabia, East Africa, India, China and south-east Asia," Unesco said.
The hidden Christian sites in the Nagasaki region in Japan was added in the World Heritage Sites list on Saturday afternoon. The site is located in the north-western part of Kyushu Island. The site has "10 villages, the Hara castle and a cathedral, built between the XVII th and XIX th century. It reflects the oldest activities of Christian missionaries and settlers in Japan."
Sansa, Buddhist Mountain Monasteries in South Korea, represents the earliest era of Buddhism on the Korean peninsula. The site includes 7 remote temples that are said to be found in the 7th to 9th centuries and are of religious use till today.
Sassanid Archaeological Landscape of Fars region in Iran has been inscribed in the list. The historical sites in three geographical zones – Firouzabad, Bishapour and Savestan – include the "first capital of the founder of the dynasty, Ardachir Papakan, as well as a city and architectural structures of his successor, King Shapur I."
The iconic Victorian And Art Deco Buildings located in India's financial capital Mumbai were added to the list on Saturday along with the Victorian Gothic architecture. The sites reflect "modernization phases of Mumbai crossings during the XIX th and XX th century."