World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Assessing Flood-Affected Ayutthaya World Heritage Site

Bangkok, 30 November 2011 – UNESCO water specialists and experts from four countries are now surveying the Ancient City of Ayutthaya in Thailand to assess the impact to the World Heritage property from the country’s most disastrous flooding in decades.

Yesterday, international experts from Italy, Japan, Netherlands and Thailand headed to Ayutthaya for a three-day mission to survey the site in order to understand the extent of damage and develop further recommendations for a short and long term restoration plan to the Thai Government.

This visit is the first international expert mission to Thailand on the restoration of Ayutthaya Historical Park and cultural monuments in Ayutthaya. High-level representatives from the Embassies of Japan, Portugal and United States of America in Thailand also joined the trip.

H.E. Mrs. Sukumol Kunplome, Thailand’s Minister of Culture, personally welcomed the international experts before their departure.

“Initially, I was anxious that the loss of evidence will result in incomplete integrity, and a restoration without sufficient budget and scientific support will certainly affect authenticity of the monuments and the sites. However, through your kind and prompt assistance to mitigate the possible damages caused to the property, I feel very much obliged and relieved,” she said.

The Minister also assured that she would do her utmost to restore the historical sites upon recommendations by the experts.

According to Ministry of Culture’s Department of Fine Arts, the entire historic island of Ayutthaya and its surrounding area was submerged by the floods for over a month since 4 October 2011. In some areas, the flood waters reached a height level of approximately 3 metres. While the water has receded in the inner island, a number of monuments in the outer periphery remain flooded to this day. More than 100 historic monuments in and around Ayutthaya World Heritage Site have been affected by floods.

The Department’s primary damage assessment reported cracks at two historical remains at the Reclining Buddha image of Wat Lokkaya-suttharam and Chedi Assembly (Chedi Rai) at Wat Phra Ram. It was also reported that Wall of Wat Chai Wattanaram, Wall of Wat Mahathat and Sungharam Chedi (pagoda) have collapsed.

The historic city of Ayutthaya was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1991. Founded c. 1350, Ayutthaya was the second Siamese capital after Sukhothai. Its remains, characterized by the prang (reliquary towers) and gigantic monasteries, give an idea of its past splendour. For more information, http://whc.unesco.org/

*******

World Aids Day 2011

http://www.unesco.org/aids

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN News: UN Censures ‘heinous Attacks’ In Lake Chad Basin

Conflict over many years has driven hundreds of thousands of people from their homes in north-east Cameroon. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe The Secretary-General strongly condemned “heinous attacks” against civilians in the Lake Chad Basin, a UN spokesperson ... More>>

South Africa: COVID-19 Pandemic Raises The Urgency Of Structural Reforms

South Africa responded swiftly to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the sharp drop in activity adds to long-standing challenges and raises the urgency of structural reforms, according to a new OECD report released today. In the latest Economic Survey of South Africa ... More>>

United Nations: ‘Immediate Humanitarian Assistance’ To Support Beirut

The response to Tuesday’s explosion in Beirut requires global support in order to “surmount the devastating impact” of the crisis facing the Lebanese people, the UN Deputy Special Coordinator for the country said on Thursday. More>>

UN Experts: Turkey Should Preserve Hagia Sophia As Space For Meeting Of Cultures

The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul should be maintained as an inter-cultural space reflecting the diversity and complexity of Turkey and its history, and preserving the outstanding universal value which resulted in its World Heritage Status, say two UN human rights ... More>>