Concerns about removing Zabid from list of World Heritage sites
This came after the Yemen’s minister of culture launched a campaign to save Zabid from modern, cement buildings spread throughout the city.
Abdullah Al-Medwahi, general manager of Zabid and head of Zabid’s local council, said construction spread widely and randomly around Zabid because of last year’s uprising and the affect of the uprising on historic buildings.
“We couldn’t do anything in Zabid because not only ordinary people are violating the rules but also public figures,” Al-Medwahi said.
Al-Medwahi said economic rehabilitation and finding financial resources for residents in Zabid should be stressed. He said that residents violate construction rules because of the lack of traditional building materials and their high prices.
Al-Medwahi said a demand was made to issue a law protecting historic cities and establishing public prosecution for violations made since 2001, to prove the state is serious toward the matter.
Ali Mutahar, director of Historic Cities General Authority’s branch in Zabid, said it is important to implement Hadi’s orders to take needed actions. Renovating houses’ facades, removing distorts from buildings and paving roads mustn’t be delayed, he said.
In addition, Mutahar said the Social Development Fund, in cooperation with Public Works Project, collected millions of riyals from the government and other international organizations to start renovating Zabid.
Mutahar said renovations are still in the initial stages. So far, four neighborhoods have been paved.
According to Mutahar, work halted because construction violations are ongoing.
“We can’t start renovating the city again unless effective actions to stop violations are taken.”