Culture Minister calls for protection of Egypt's cultural institutions

Ahram Online, Friday 16 Aug 2013

Minister of Culture Mohamed Saber Arab released a statement in which he called to protect the buildings serving Egypt's artistic and cultural heritage in midst of violent unrest in streets of Egypt

Egypt's Minister of Culture, Mohamed Saber Arab. (Photo: Ahram)

In a statement released on Thursday 15 August, Minister of Culture Mohamed Saber Arab made a call to all who care about Egypt's cultural heritage to protect all buildings and property belonging to the country's artistic and cultural sectors amid major political unrest on the streets.

A number of sites have served as home to Egyptian creativity and cultural advancement, he added. The statement specified that among those buildings of cultural value are countless palaces located throughout Egypt’s governorates, Cairo Opera House's complex, dozens of theatres, libraries and other cultural institutions.

More than belonging to the state, these buildings belong to the people and they must be protected against the destruction that the country has witnessed in recent days, Saber Arab said.

Saber Arab noted a number of governmental properties and dozens of other buildings which have been either burned or vandalized since the pro-Morsi sit-ins were cleared by Egyptian police on Wednesday, an act which was followed by the nationwide violence.

According to sources, on Wednesday evening the main gate of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina was damaged during the clashes that errupted in the city.

Also on Wednesday the Malawi National Museum in the Upper Egyptian city of Minya was severely damaged and looted by rioters when pro-Morsi protesters allegedly violated the museum, which is adjacent to the town police station and the Malawi council building.

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