Egyptian political turmoil dissuades tourism

Alexandria museums closed till further notice

GMT 15:38 2013 Wednesday ,01 May

Arab Today, arab today Alexandria museums closed till further notice

Only a few museums in Alexandria now remain open to the public
Alexandria - Ahmed Khalid

Only a few museums in Alexandria now remain open to the public "Closed until further notice," is the slogan greeting visitors to most of the museums and archaeological sites in the city of Alexandria.Over the past two years, almost all of the archaeological sites that serve as tourist attractions in Alexandria have closed; including the Royal palace of Jewelry, the Greco-Roman Museum and the Museum of Mosaics due to either security reasons or disrepair.
There are some places that remain open such as the National Museum in Alexandria.
The January 25 revolution has had an influential role on the dwindling tourist numbers. Suhair Amin, the General Supervisor of the Central Administration of the Museums at Alexandria said that the number of tourists that visit Alexandria    dropped significantly after the revolution, because of the political turmoil.
She added that tourist visits to Alexandria after the revolution normally consist of only a quick visit. In addition, Amin pointed out the lack of funding to the Ministry of Antiquities has caused the closure of a lot of museums. Only the National Museum is still open to the public.
She also explained that political stability will play a key role in attracting tourists to Alexandria.
Mohamed Farid, the General Director of the Greco-Roman said that the museum has been closed for more than 10-months after the cessation of its restoration process due to the non-payment of dues to a contracted company.
He explained that the museum is one of the most important museums in Alexandria, and the oldest museum in the Mediterranean which specialises in Greek and Roman Archeology. The museum used to receive thousands of visitors per day, making millions in revenue every year.
He added that "the restoration project was supposed to cost around £80million,” and was supposed to include a library, and an exhibition hall, noting that the museum includes 190,000 pieces.
Since the closure of the museum the antiques have been distributed to three different stores to save them.
Farid said that: “despite the poor climate in Egypt, we must accelerate the process of saving the antiques without any regard to the circumstances and the unconscious behaviour.”

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