Egyptians worry Renaissance Dam poses risk for heritage sites along Nile; Salwa Samir; Al Monitor
Natural and cultural heritage sites in Egypt and the Nile Basin countries are at risk due to the negative impact on the environment that would be caused by the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, according to a study by Egyptian archaeologist Abdel Aziz Salem.
Ethiopia started building the dam in 2011, at the height of the Arab Spring. As it nears completion seven years later, it has become a major conflict between Ethiopia and its two downstream neighbors, Egypt and Sudan.
Salem’s study, which was finalized in March, reports that the construction of the dam is not simply a political and economic issue but a cultural one, as it would have grave consequences on the UNESCO-registered natural and cultural sites in the Nile Basin.
The report, which is the result of a five-year research project by Salem, states that the sites at risk are located not just in Egypt, but in Ethiopia and Sudan as well. Salem, a professor of archaeology at Cairo University, worked from 2002 to 2015 at the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
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