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16 June, 2024
 
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EU-UNDP collaboration brings Arif Bey Aqueduct back to life

Heritage renewed with EU funding and UNDP expertise

Newsroom / CNA

Conservation work at the Arif Bey Aqueduct in Afania by the Technical Committee for Cultural Heritage has been completed, a project that has been fully funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Cyprus.

The remains of Arif Bey's aqueduct have a length of about 270 meters and is located in the plains of Mesaoria, near the settlement of Ornithi in Afania of Famagusta district.

The co-chairman of the Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage, Sotos Ktoris, told CNA, on Wednesday that the repairs aimed at protecting “this historic structure, which is part of the tangible cultural heritage of Cyprus, and preserving it for future generations.”

Although the exact date of construction of the aqueduct remains unknown, the aqueduct appears to have been constructed and possibly underwent modifications and adjustments over time to serve the irrigation needs of Arif Bey's farm.

The aqueduct was part of a wider irrigation network consisting of surface channels and underground connected wells. The main repairs carried out in the surviving part of the aqueduct included vegetation management, removal of asbestos pipes, deep grouting and repairs to the structure to restore its static adequacy, jointing of the masonry, maintenance of the coating inside the canal and its waterproofing.

The next projects to be completed are the mosque in Lefkara village of Larnaca district and the church of Archangel Michael in Turkish occupied Rizokarpasso.

Since 2012, over 123 cultural heritage sites island-wide have been conserved, structurally supported, physically protected or restored by TCCH and UNDP with the support from the European Union with a total funding of €24,915 million.

The TCCH has received a total of €35.6 million invested by several donors to implement the priorities of the Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage for the preservation of the island-wide cultural heritage of Cyprus.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The latest round of negotiations, in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.

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Cyprus  |  heritage  |  environment  |  EU  |  economy

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