2. Elephant Terrace:
Recalling the two levels of pathologies found on the Elephant Terrace affecting both the stability of its structures and conservation of its decor, the ad hoc group of experts:
a) Points out to the ICC-Angkor, but especially to the APSARA National Authority, the very serious risk of completely losing, in just a few decades, this outstanding work of Khmer heritage art and highlight of the World Heritage site, viewed by millions of national and international visitors every year.
b) Draws its attention to the complexity of the conservation work required, that must absolutely combine consolidation of the existing structures, dismantling and reassembly of certain parts suffering excessive deformation, waterproofing the upper terraces, draining the inner fill and the ground outside. The project is one of major archaeological concern, the stone-by-stone consolidation of the sculptured decor in peril. The various interventions therefore require the joint, coordinated involvement of various skill groups—engineers, architects, archaeologists, stone restorers, laboratories—all with state-of-the-art expertise for this highly technical, complex undertaking.
c) Having learned belatedly, while making its site visit that a cooperation program is reportedly on the drawing board between the APSARA National Authority and the CHICO KOREA institution in a “World Heritage Project” involving the northern section of the Elephant Terrace. The experts regret that this new contributor was not present during the visit. It feels that assurance must be given that the contributor indeed has the required mix of the aforementioned specialties and is in a position to complete, with the level of excellence required, this particularly sensitive and complex operation.
d) Expresses therefore the wish that the detailed content of this new cooperation program be submitted officially as soon as possible, to the Standing Secretariat as per usual procedures of the ICC-Angkor.