Qaitbay citadel in danger of collapse in Alexandria

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Archaeological Expert Abdel Raheem Rihan has warned against catastrophe at Qaitbay citadel in Alexandria, Egypt as caves under the citadel have been filled with the sea water, especially under the main rock on which the citadel is based, which threatens its stability.

Qaitbay citadel in danger of collapse in Alexandria
Front view of Qaitbay citadel Alexandria Egypt [Credit: WikiCommons]

Archaeological detectives discovered a landslide in the ground on the beach behind the citadel, Rihan added.

Rihan told the Egyptian news publication Al-Masry Al-Youm that he came to this conclusion after compiling data from an archaeological instrument. He added that he took photos from the scene and called for forming an urgent archaeological engineering committee to estimate the dangers and methods for handling the situation.

Yasser Oraby, archaeological detective at the citadel, said there was a report issued in 2006 that warned of the same catastrophe and that caves threaten the citadel’s safety. A few months ago, he addressed the Ministry of Monuments again over the issue, however, the response indicated that the citadel’s protection is shared by the ministry and the engineering department and that it will have high costs.

Al-Masry Al-Youm could not receive a comment from the ministry over the issue, however, Waheed Seif, head of Alexandria’s archaeological sites department said, “Ask them where they heard about this. The minister has banned us from speaking to media until we have investigated the claims.”

Editor’s note:  The Citadel is situated at the entrance of the eastern harbour on the eastern point of the Pharos Island. It was erected in about 1480 on the exact site of the famous Lighthouse of Alexandria, which was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

Source: ETurbo News [March 21, 2014]

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