Current conservation issues

On 24 March 2011, the State Party submitted a report on the state of conservation with

information on progress in implementing corrective measures. From 11 to 21 December

2010, a joint World Heritage Centre /IUCN mission visited the property, as requested by the

World Heritage Committee at its 34


session (Brasilia, 2010).   The mission report is available

online at the following Internet address:   http:/  

The mission noted that since the reactive monitoring missions of 2006 and 2007, security

problems continue to hamper the implementation of corrective measures.   Especially since

2008 when the Virunga National Park (ViNP) was faced with a sharp rise in insecurity

following the occupation of a significant portion of the property by the rebel National

Congress for the Defence of the People (CNDP).   Although the situation improved in 2009, to

date several armed groups continue to operate in the Park.   They illegally exploit natural

resources and spread terror among the villagers and travelers on main roads through the

Park.   This is aggravated by the presence of several thousand undisciplined members of the

FARDC based permanently in the Park, and who are often involved in large-scale poaching.

The World Heritage Centre notes that since the December 2010 mission, the security

situation again seems to have worsened following several attacks by Rwandan rebels, which

have again resulted in loss of life amongst the guards.    

The mission confirmed that the threats identified in previous missions are still valid, including

the massive and illegal invasions in many places in the Park, illegal fishing on the lake, the

carbonization of the forest of the volcanic sector for the commercialization of charcoal, and

the poaching of the large mammals of the savannas. The mission noted that the

encroachments now cover an...