The Committee of Environmental Preservation and Protection, Ministry of Health and Environment of the Republic of Albania (Albania) 
The Ministry of Agriculture of the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria (Algeria)
The Federal Ministry of Environment, Youth and Families of the Republic of Austria (Austria)
The Ministry for Urban Planning and Environment of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
The Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Bulgaria (Bulgaria) 
The Ministry for the Protection of the Environment of the Republic of Croatia (Croatia)
The Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources of the Republic of Cyprus (Cyprus)
The Department of Zoos and the Egyptian Wildlife Service, Ministry of Agriculture of the Arab Republic of Egypt (Egypt)
The Commission of the EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES
The Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Georgia
The Ministry of Environment, Physical Planning and Public Works of the Hellenic Republic (Greece)
The Ministry of Environment and Regional Policy of the Republic of Hungary (Hungary)
The Department of the Environment of the Islamic Republic of Iran (Iran)
The Environment Protection and Improvement Council of the Republic of Iraq (Iraq)
The Ministry of Environment of the Italian Republic (Italy)
The Ministry of Ecology and Biological Resources of the Republic of Kazakhstan (Kazakhstan)
The Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Malta (Malta)
Department of Water and Forests of the Kingdom of Morocco (Morocco) 
The Ministry of Regional Municipalities' Affairs and Environment of the Sultanate of Oman (Oman)
The Ministry of Water, Forests and Environmental Protection of Romania
The Ministry of Environment Protection and Natural Resources of the Russian Federation
The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Nutrition of the Kingdom of Spain (Spain)
The Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Tunisia (Tunisia) 
The Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Turkey (Turkey) 
The Ministry of Nature Resources Management and Nature Conservation of Turkmenistan
The Ministry of Environment Protection of Ukraine
The Federal Environmental Agency of the United Arab Emirates
The State Committee for Nature Conservation of the Republic of Uzbekistan (Uzbekistan)
The Environment Protection Council/Committee of Republic of Yemen (Yemen)
The Ministry of Environment Protection of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Yugoslavia)

The undersigned, acting on behalf of the respective authorities named above,

Aware that the whole population of the Slender-billed Curlew (Numenius tenuirostris) has been reduced to the brink of extinction;

Recognizing that the population of this bird species is still inhabiting a small breeding area and, on its way to the wintering areas, is migrating on a ramified route crossing the territories of numerous Range States;

Concerned that the hunting of this bird species and loss of its habitats, especially wetlands on its migratory routes and in its wintering areas, are thought to contribute to the continuing decline in the numbers of the Slender-billed Curlew;

In view of the insufficient knowledge about this bird species which urgently needs to be increased;

Conscious that immediate action must be taken to prevent the ongoing threat of extinction;

Acknowledging shared responsibility as to the protection of biodiversity of the palearctic avifauna;

Following Resolution No. 7 of the XX World Conference of the International Council for Bird Preservation in Hamilton, New Zealand (November 1990); the Declaration of the Slender-billed Curlew Workshop in Arosio, Italy (March 1992) and in Moulay Bouselham, Morocco (January 1994); and a Recommendation of the Scientific Council Meeting and the fourth Conference of the Parties of the Bonn Convention in Nairobi (June 1994);

Appealing to all Range States of the Species that not yet have done so to join or, where appropriate, to confirm and to implement the Bonn Convention, the Ramsar Convention and any regional Conventions and agreements which serve, inter alia, the object of conserving the Slender-billed Curlew,

AGREE to work closely together to improve the conservation status of the Slender-billed Curlew throughout its potential breeding, migrating and wintering range.

To that end they shall, in a spirit of mutual understanding and co-operation, endeavour to:

  1. Provide strict protection for the Slender-billed Curlew and identify and conserve the wetlands and other habitats essential for its survival, in accordance with Article III, paragraphs 4 and 5 of the Bonn Convention as well as with Appendix I;
  2. Implement in their respective countries the provisions of the Action Plan annexed to this Memorandum as a basis for the conservation of the whole population of the species. Implementation of the Memorandum, including the Action Plan, shall be assessed by correspondence or personal contacts with the Secretariat and the Scientific Council of the Bonn Convention;
  3. Facilitate the expeditious exchange of scientific, technical and legal information needed to co-ordinate conservation measures and co-operate with recognized scientists, appropriate international organizations and other Range States in order to facilitate their work conducted in relation to the Action Plan;

They shall also:

  • Designate a competent authority or an authorized scientist to serve as a contact person for the other Parties and communicate without delay the name of this person to the Secretariat of the Bonn Convention;
  • Provide to the Secretariat of the Bonn Convention, at least annually after the signing of this Memorandum of Understanding, a report on its implementation. The Secretariat shall transmit to each of the Range States all of the reports received, together with an overview report which it shall compile on the basis of information at its disposal;
  • Cooperate with the Secretariat to develop, within two years after the date of entry into force of this Memorandum of Understanding, a longer-term Conservation or Action Plan for possible inclusion in the African-Eurasian Waterbird Agreement being developed under the auspices of the Bonn Convention. It shall include, inter alia:
    a. actions to find the breeding places in the marshes of the taiga, steppes or forest steppes of southwestern Siberia;
    b. provisions for the better identification of migratory routes and resting habitats, especially key sites on the migratory routes and in the wintering areas;
    c. appropriate legal regulations to protect the birds from significant disturbance or killing through hunting or other activities;
    d. actions to protect all identified breeding areas as well as key migration and wintering sites;
    e. proposals for the further elaboration and effective improvement of those protection measures and research activities suggested in the Action Plan appended to this Memorandum of Understanding;

Apart from financing, on a national basis, the different measures taken by the individual Parties, efforts should also be made to gain financial support for key points of the Action Plan from other sources.

After entry into force of the African-Eurasian Waterbird Agreement, which is currently under development, all those functions listed in this Memorandum concerning the co-ordination, the receipt and further distribution of reports as well as the development of further actions may be transferred to the secretariat of the Agreement.

The text of this Memorandum of Understanding will also be forwarded to the responsible authorities of countries which possibly share the annual life cycle of the Slender-billed Curlew (up until now it has been impossible to prove a consistent occurrence of the species); where scientific evidence suggests a strong probability that the life cycle of the species is shared, these countries are also invited to join the Memorandum: Armenia, Azerbaijan, France, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the Republic of Moldova, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia and Syria.

Basic principles

  1. This Memorandum of Understanding shall take effect immediately after the Range States have signed it and shall remain in effect for an initial period of three years from that date. It shall remain open for signature indefinitely and shall take effect for all other signatory States on the first day of the first month following the date on which they sign. The Memorandum of Understanding shall be renewed automatically every three years subject to the right of any Party to terminate its participation by providing a one year's written notice to each of the other Parties.
  2. The Memorandum of Understanding may be amended by a consensus of the majority of the signatory States. Amendments of the Action Plan for any Range State may be made by the responsible Minister of the country concerned. Such amendments of national Action Plans will be sent by the CMS Secretariat to all other Range States for their information.
  3. The working language for all matters related to this Memorandum of Understanding shall be English.