Bishkek Global Mountain Summit
In 2002, the capital of Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek hosted the largest congress ever organized to gather government representatives, NGO`s and experts concerned with mountain areas. The Bishkek Global Mountain Summit, from 30th October – 1st November 2002 brought together over 600 delegates from 60 countries. The Summit was the culminating global event of the United Nations International Year of the Mountains, an initiative of former President Akaev of the Republic of Kyrgyzstan. As a result, delegates unanimously adopted the “Bishkek Global Mountain Platform”, a document designed to guide governments and all stakeholders involved in mountain development issues. The main goal is to improve the livelihoods of mountain people, to protect mountain ecosystems and to use mountain resources in a sustainable way.
“Local people have the right to the benefits of wildlife”, said Dieter Schramm, President of the International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation (CIC) in his well-received statement during the closing session of the Summit. The surveying and the monitoring of wildlife populations must be in the hands of the local communities considering their traditional knowledge. “Game census of experts alone, without the involvement of local people, shall not be acceptable on international level”. The performance of wildlife managers must be harmonized and checked; governments are to be kept responsible for education and the communication of wildlife matters especially to the young generations and the general public. All stakeholders are called upon to cooperate on a regional, national and trans-boundary level.
Schramm strongly urged the delegates to use all their influence to insure that these issues are implemented by governments and the UN System.
The above topic is the focus of one of the main recommendations passed at the Symposium on cross-border wildlife management in Central Asia, held by the CIC and the FAO as part of the Summit. The importance of this meeting was underlined through the presence of Mr. Shafqat Kakakhel, Deputy Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), who confirmed the value of wildlife use as a mechanism for sustainable development. “Sustainable use of wild species has been an effective tool for the benefit of both wildlife and local communities”, he states.” Other participants came from IUCN, UNESCO, UNDP, WWF as well as from six Central Asian range states. The Prime Minister of Bhutan was a special guest and the Crown-Prince of Nepal confirmed his particular support. The participants assessed the meeting as the founding step of the establishment of a CIC Central Asian Coordination Group.
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