Cambodia Starts to Restore Roof of Angkor Wat's Eastern Gate

This undated photo shows staff members working at the restoration site of the Angkor Wat's eastern gate's roof in Angkor Archaeological Park in Siem Reap province, Cambodia. Photo: APSARA National Authority/Handout via Xinhua

PHNOM PENH -- Cambodia's APSARA National Authority (ANA) archaeologists have begun to restore the dilapidated roof of the famed Angkor Wat's eastern gate, said an ANA news release on Tuesday.

Angkor Wat is a major temple in the UNESCO-listed Angkor Archaeological Park in northwestern Siem Reap province, and the ANA is the government agency responsible for managing, safeguarding and preserving the ancient park.

Kham Mony, technical officer of the ANA's Department of Conservation of Monuments and Preventive Archaeology, said the team had started to remove the roof's stones as some had broken into pieces and collapsed.

"Due to the age of the construction, some stones rotted and had torn apart, resulting in damage on the roof's structure," he said, adding that the experts would fix the damaged stones and reassemble them into their original locations.

The eastern gate, one of the four gates of the Angkor Wat, is a main gate that tourists visit every day.

The 401-square-kilometer Angkor Archaeological Park is home to 91 ancient temples, which had been built from the ninth to the 13th centuries.

As the country's most popular tourist destination, the park attracted almost 800,000 international visitors in 2023, the state-owned Angkor Enterprise said.

It added that the site earned 37.1 million U.S. dollars in revenue from ticket sales last year from only 11.5 million dollars in the year before.

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