Iraq to restore ancient arch to woo back tourists

Agence France-Presse
Mon, Jun 3, 2013

by Mohamad Ali Harissi

MADAIN, Iraq — Iraqi authorities have contracted a Czech firm to carry out a 10-month restoration of the ancient Arch of Ctesiphon as part of a plan to boost tourism to the once-popular site.

The famed 6th century monument, which is the world's largest brick-built arch and the last structure still standing from the ancient Persian imperial capital Ctesiphon, has fallen into disrepair.

Now, Czech company Everis has been brought in to restore the arch, also known as Taq-i Kisra from its Persian name, in a first step to revive the town's economy. The firm hopes the project will help the area to recover some of its lost glory.

Construction of the Arch began in 540 AD during the Persian Sassanid dynasty's long wars with the Byzantine Empire.

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