US funds restoration of ancient Roman city in Morocco
US Embassy Charge d’Affaires David Greene announced the project's launch at an on-site ceremony in Volubilis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Morocco’s most popular tourist destinations.
“This project is an example of the US Government’s continued partnership with the Moroccan government and with local organisations to preserve and share the Kingdom’s invaluable cultural heritage,” Greene said at the launch ceremony.
The US is partnering with Morocco's culture ministry and the local Ifker Association of Education on the Environment and Sustainable Development for the project, according to the embassy's press release.
The Volubilis project is financed by a special fund dedicated to celebrating the Twentieth Anniversary of the Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation, established by the US Congress in 2001 to preserve cultural heritage worldwide.
Through the fund, the US Embassy has provided more than $1 million to help fund 12 cultural heritage projects in Morocco.
The fine mosaics, inspired by Greco-Roman mythology, were uncovered when about half of the Volubilis site was excavated during and after French rule over Morocco.
The Volubilis project will also train local artisans on how to restore and preserve the works of art.
“Given the importance of these objects, the project will be implemented with a close coordination with the local community and youth, through training in mosaic restoration, as well as education and the sharing of best practices of cultural heritage preservation and sharing the importance of Morocco’s cultural heritage,” Ifker President Anwar El Haouari said during the ceremony.