Archaeologists and tour guides in Luxor on Sunday demanded that Mohamed Abdel Maqsoud, general secretary of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, launch an international campaign for saving Kabash Road.
Kabash Road connects Karnak and Luxor temples at a length of 2700 meters. People have illegally built on it since the start of Egypt’s revolution at the end of January.
Mansour Barek, supervisor of the archaeological area, emphasized the necessity of providing funds for compensating those whose buildings will be bulldozed and relocating people living in Abu Asaba, north of Kabash Road, whose dwellings encroach on the road.
Ahram Online (Nevine El-Aref)
Although the development works in the Avenue of the Sphinxes on Luxor’s east bank is on hold due to lack of funds, it will be officially opened in October, according to original schedule.
“This is the only way to save such an avenue from further encroachment,” Mohamed Abdel Maqsoud, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), told Ahram Online.
He explained that when the development works were put on hold, Luxor’s inhabitants trespassed in the area surrounding the avenue, which threatened the newly discovered antiquities there.
Archaeologists have unearthed a number of Roman buildings and workshops used for the manufacture of clay pots and statues, as well as several reliefs. One of the reliefs bears the cartouche of the famous Queen Cleopatra VII (51-30 BC).
When the avenue is opened to visitors, says Abdel Maqsoud, all encroachments will stop.
To help resume the development work at the avenue, which has already cost LE100 Million, the Ministry of Tourism has offered the SCA LE3 Million.