The destruction of “Ben Tulun Aqueduct” exposes Sisi’s hostility to Islamic antiquities

The axes of the dictator Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi caused a disaster for Islamic monuments in Egypt, after the axes of Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, which were established, demolished, without feasibility studies, the arches of Ahmed Ibn Tulun, the governor of Egypt during the period of the crusader attacks and the end of the Ayyubid state rule, which are registered among the antiquities.

The aqueduct dates back to the 9th century AD, when its age exceeded a thousand years, and it is the second fixed (recorded) trace that witnessed the history of the Tulunid state and the oldest existing barrages in Egypt. And because Sisi dealt with geography by selling, destroying and forsaking, he preferred to attach history to geography by selling, destroying, losing and giving up.

Zaki Hassan’s thesis is the most important study on it so far, as well as Farid Shafi’i and Dr. Muhammad Hamza Al-Haddad in his master’s thesis on the burial of Cairo in 1987 AD; Ibn Tulun spent 140,000 dinars on it and in a narration 40,000 dinars, and it was considered one of the wonders of the buildings until its construction was attributed to the jinn and poems were said about it.

Nahdmah Bhedina

Archaeological researcher Dr. Hussain Duqail asked, after demolishing 3 monuments within months, the first of them (the tomb of the Tabataba family) on the pretext of transfer, then (Tabiyat Aswan) and now (Qanatir Ibn Tulun), saying: “How long will we demolish our monuments with our own hands?!”. He explained, “Now…in these moments, social media pioneers and some newspapers are talking about what Dr. Mohamed Hamza Al-Haddad (former dean of Cairo Antiquities) published from photos of the demolition of part of (Ahmed Ibn Tulun Aqueduct) in the Basateen area, south of Cairo, dating back more than 1,200 years. Great stay!”

Journalists specializing in antiquities transmitted through their Facebook platforms the testimony of the former Dean of Cairo Antiquities, Dr. Mohamed Hamza El-Haddad, who directed an urgent distress to save the antiquities. He wrote commenting on a photo taken on Tuesday, June 22, 2021 AD, considering it material evidence that Egypt is on its way to inspect; It is one of the oldest and most important Islamic monuments, which is the aqueduct of Ahmed bin Tulun in the orchards south of Cairo known as the Imam’s Journey or Umm al-Sultan Well.

He explained that the arcades date from 259 AH 872 AD, and are considered one of the greatest urban and architectural works and feats of Ibn Tulun, founder of the second independent state from the Abbasid Caliphate in Egypt 254-292 AH, and stories and legends were woven around these arcades narrated by al-Balawi, Ibn Duqmaq, al-Maqrizi and others, as he studied them in The modern era eminent scholars such as Casano Fa, Crisol, Hotecker, Feith and Zaki Muhammad Hassan in his doctoral thesis on the Tulunid state in French from the Sorbonne in 1933 AD.

He explained that it “extends from the orchards where the socket tower is located and ends at the tomb of Judge Bakkar “before it was demolished unfortunately” and its location was in front of the Tabataba family scene “280 AH and not 334 AH as we proved”, which was demolished on the pretext of Fakha recently before the opening of the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization.

From neglect to demolition

Contrary to the renovation and restoration of Jewish museums such as the Temple of Alexandria and the licensing of building churches, Al-Haddad revealed that the Ben Tulun Aqueduct had been neglected and encroached for a long time, and when the ring road was built, which was installed over some of its parts, and today the region is witnessing the construction of a bridge within the national projects! And he demanded that “development” not be “at the expense of Egypt’s antiquities and heritage in general, and Egyptian-Islamic antiquities in particular,” explaining: “In this case, coordination between the concerned authorities and between the Ministry of Antiquities, the Supreme Council of Antiquities and the Islamic and Coptic antiquities sector is necessary to find alternative solutions, which are many, and therefore we preserve On our tracks and at the same time we implement national projects.”

Coptic expert

Archeology expert, Dr. Monica Hanna, attacked the statement of the Minister of Tourism and Antiquities for describing Ibn Tulun Barrages as “a bit of bricks!” She added: “I was deeply appalled by the statement of the Minister of Antiquities to the hardworking journalist Shehab Tarek in the literary news, and I asked: “Should I leave some bricks because it is recorded?” She explained that “archeology is the science of studying” bricks, even if His Excellency was not studied. Archeology by virtue of his basic study in tourist guides, he must at least have sufficient knowledge of what is archeology in the ministerial portfolio for which he is responsible?

“Hanna” mentioned the statement of the former minister of the coup in Sisi’s parliament when he said, “If I recorded every building except for 100 years, I would record half of the country’s buildings!” She explained that the Minister of the Revolution overlooked the fact that the official mission of the Ministry of Antiquities, according to the law amending it in 2020, is to protect all archaeological sites, whether they are pyramids, “bricks” or “a building except for 100 years.”

“Shwaya Brick” website

The expert, Monica Hanna, considered that the minister of Sisi’s indifference to “a few bricks” in destroying them may benefit the archaeological science with a lot of information, as the destruction of the Ahmed Ibn Tulun Aqueduct will miss us important information about the Islamic industrial heritage at this time, the methods of brick making, and the architecture and construction at this time. The place, which is historical information that is not only useful to the field of archeology but also to many engineering fields, and losing it will cause us to lose a history that we will not be able to retrieve.

And she warned that the concept of the Minister of Antiquities of what is archaeological “did not go beyond the colonial concept of cultural heritage”! Adding that, “The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities is still judging the heritage according to the old colonial concept of Mariette.” The researcher counted a number of projects of encroachment on antiquities since 2011, warning that “Egypt has lost many of its antiquities and heritage due to neglect, corruption, and approval by the Ministry’s administration of projects that harm the Egyptian heritage, such as:

1. Saqqara Mariouteya Road

2. Demolition of the Fatimid Aswan Cob

3. Extension of the Ottoman bath in Qena

4. Selling ancient mounds in the delta, for example, is an important part of the ancient Jewish hill

5. Muhammed Ali’s gin is strong

6. Mohamed Abdel Wahed El Fassi’s house after spending more than 20 million pounds for restoration

7. The royal train station in Kafr El-Sheikh is written off

8. The fall of the archaeological ceiling of Sultan Hassan

9. Ibn Tulun Aqueduct

Source: بوابة الحرية والعدالة by

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