Citadel in Syria's Aleppo reopens to public after post-earthquake restoration

  • World
  • Sunday, 18 Feb 2024

DAMASCUS, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- Syria's culture ministry announced on Saturday the reopening of the historic citadel of Aleppo to visitors following the completion of initial restoration work on damage sustained during the major earthquakes in February of last year.

In a statement, the ministry announced the completion of the first and second phases of the restoration, reinforcement, and rehabilitation of the southern tower of the citadel's entrance. The area was significantly affected by the major earthquakes in February 2023 and subsequent aftershocks that shook Türkiye and Syria.

The ministry stated that after it was alerted to the danger of cracks and fissures that appeared in the structure of the entrance following the earthquakes, visits to the castle were suspended as a precaution against any serious repercussions on the citadel and visitors.

It noted that detailed tests conducted by the General Directorate of Antiquities and Museums, in cooperation with a mission from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) that visited Aleppo, revealed a movement in the entrance that concentrated in the supporting pillars of the bridge leading to the southern tower.

The ministry assured the public that the citadel has reopened to visitors following the necessary restoration work, noting that rehabilitation of the remaining parts of the citadel will begin soon.

The Aleppo Citadel, a historic fortress in Syria dating back to the 3rd millennium BC, has been occupied by various civilizations and undergone significant damage and reconstruction throughout history. After it was damaged during the Syrian Civil War, efforts are ongoing to restore and preserve the structure, which is part of the Ancient City of Aleppo, a UNESCO world heritage site.

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