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24 Oct 2018 | HKPL

Bam-e-Dunya: a network to bolster conservation efforts on the roof of the world

Partners from protected areas in four countries along the ancient Silk Route – Afghanistan, China, Pakistan, and Tajikistan – and international conservation agencies have formed the ‘Bam-e-Dunya’ network and signed a joint declaration with the aim to promote long-term conservation and sustainable mountain development in the Hindu Kush Karakoram Pamir Landscape (HKPL). The declaration was signed during a four-day workshop jointly organized by ICIMOD and Lanzhou University titled, “Harmonizing Conservation and Development along the Silk Road’ held at Lanzhou, China from 14–17 September 2018.

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This historic agreement lays the foundation for long-term collaboration and exchange to conserve fragile ecosystems and help mountain communities adapt and thrive in the face of rapid cultural, economic, and environmental change. ‘Bam-e-Dunya’ is a Persian phrase meaning ‘roof of the world’. Workshop participants adopted the name unanimously to focus much needed attention on the HKPL and to foster exchange and cooperation among inter-connected protected areas such as: Wakhan National Park in Afghanistan; Taxkorgan Nature Reserve in China; Broghil, Khunjerab, and Qurumbar national parks in Pakistan; and the Zorkul Nature Reserve in Tajikistan.

The workshop participants endorsed the need “to harmonize and strengthen integrated landscape management for long-term conservation and sustainable mountain development in the Hindu Kush Karakoram Pamir Landscape” and pledged to encourage exchange knowledge, expand access to regional and international networks, promote technology transfer and to build capacity, and to identify joint opportunities and challenges related to conservation and development. More than 40 people attended the workshop, including representatives of protected areas from the four countries, international conservation agencies and subject experts.

This new collaboration will contribute to efforts by the Hindu Kush Karakoram Pamir Landscape Conservation and Development Initiative (HKPLCDI), an initiative of ICIMOD, to promote regional cooperation to support sustainable development along with the conservation of the landscape’s rich natural and cultural heritage. HKPLCDI is currently supported by the government of Sweden.

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