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Georgia may lose World Heritage object2012-06-25 15:57
Bagrati Cathedral doesn't meet the criteria of the UNESCO-protected object any more - such is a preliminary assessment of the effects of restoration of this ancient monument of architecture. The temple may lose the World Heritage status in early July, at the 36th session of the Committee of Cultural Heritage in St. Petersburg.
The Georgian government has committed another mistake. Restoration work on the ruins of the temple included in the treasury of world history - Bagrati Cathedral - was started recently. During the reconstruction of the temple there was built an elevator and concrete structures were used. Authors of the reconstruction project, the architects Ivan Gremelashvili and Tengiz Vahtangadze, feel uncomfortable in a conversation with the journalists. But otherwise they could not work - the government ordered to restore the temple.
"I was not involved in the designing of the elevator. They have invited the Italian architect for this. I'm working on restoring the original appearance of the temple", the architect Tengiz Vahtangadze told us.
Bagrati Cathedral was built in the tenth century in Kutaisi, in the hill of Ukimerioni, during the reign of King Bagrat III (975-1014). Due to its architectural and artistic value, the temple is a monument of world architecture. In ancient times it was a cultural and educational center of Georgia, but it was captured and sacked by Turks in 1692.
In 1994, the temple was included into the UNESCO World Heritage. Now, the government has decided to restore the temple, and I'm not exaggerating when I say that here they are carrying out "Western-style renovation".
"Because of the work carried out in the temple, it has lost its originality, so that it doesn't meet those requirements needed in order to get into the list of world cultural heritage any more", said in a preliminary assessment of the UNESCO.
In November 2011, during the negotiations the UNESCO denied the Georgian government in the restoration of the temple and banned the reconstruction.