- Title: Gazan sets up museum of artifacts excavated near border with Israel
- Date: 15th January 2020
- Summary: KHAN YOUNIS, GAZA (JANUARY 12, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF CO-FOUNDER OF QARARA CULTURAL MUSEUM, NAJLA ABU NAHEL, AND VOLUNTEER, MAHMOUD ABED AL-GHAFOUR, USING TOOL TO REMOVE DIRT FROM ARTIFACT THEY DUG NEAR GAZA BORDER WITH ISRAEL ABU NAHEL AND GHAFOUR PUTTING PIECES TOGETHER VARIOUS OF ABU NAHEL AND GHAFOUR EXCAVATING ARTIFACT KHAN YOUNIS, GAZA (JANUARY 6, 2020) (REUTERS) ABU NAHEL AND GHAFOUR IN WORKSHOP RESTORING ARTIFACTS VARIOUS OF GHAFOUR BRUSHING ARTIFACT VARIOUS OF ABU NAHEL WORKING ON ARTIFACT (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) CO-FOUNDER OF QARARA CULTURAL MUSEUM, NAJLA ABU NAHEL, SAYING: "We find these pieces in the lands near the border (with Israel). We work in an area which is 1.5 kilometres away from the fence. It is a very dangerous area for us to go dig and try to find artifacts. It is hard to dig in these areas but we manage to do this through our connections with the farmers who might find these pieces. Also they find pieces when it rains and they appear on the surface." SIGN OF MUSEUM READING (Arabic/English): "Al-Qarara Cultural Museum - Established in 2016" ABU NAHEL STANDING NEAR GLASS CASE FILLED WITH OLD COINS OLD COINS IN GLASS CASE OLD PASSPORT ABU NAHEL ORGANISING OLD SILVER ANTIQUES ON SHELF OLD MILITARY EQUIPMENT / SIGN READING (Arabic); "Military Equipment" (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) CO-FOUNDER OF QARARA CULTURAL MUSEUM, NAJLA ABU NAHEL, SAYING: "We decided to establish our restoration laboratory as the first one in Gaza strip, because most of the artifacts we get are either broken, destroyed, or parts of the artifacts are missing because of the lack of awareness of the importance of these pieces within the local community including the farmers, engineers and workers." KHAN YOUNIS, GAZA (JANUARY 12, 2020) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR OF MUSEUM / SCHOOL CHILDREN VISITING VARIOUS OF SCHOOL CHILDREN LOOKING AT ARTIFACTS IN MUSEUM'S FRONT YARD VARIOUS OF STUDENTS PLAYING WITH OLD PIANO STUDENTS EXAMINING ARTIFACTS AT MUSEUM (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) DIRECTOR OF NWAR EDUCATIONAL CENTRE, NAJWA AL-FARRA, SAYING: "The number of museums is very low in Gaza Strip, and the people who care to preserve artifacts and our heritage are few and that is why we came here to al-Qarara museum because it is close to Khan Younis, from our centre, and also because it shows very old artifacts." KHAN YOUNIS, GAZA (JANUARY 6, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF ARCHAEOLOGIST, WALID AL-AKKAD, CLEANING ANCIENT STONE STRUCTURE (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) ARCHAEOLOGIST, WALID AL-AKKAD, SAYING: "These young people are protecting our heritage, they are interested in this field and I consider this kind of work as honourable work for all the Palestinians. That is why I call on all Palestinians to try and protect their heritage and the Palestinian identity because it represents the culture and history and identity of a nation." VARIOUS OF AKKAD LOOKING AT ARTIFACTS IN GARDEN
- Embargoed: 29th January 2020 13:38
- Keywords: Archaeology Artifacts Gaza Israel Palestinians Qarara museum in Khan Younis
- Location: KHAN YOUNIS, GAZA
- City: KHAN YOUNIS, GAZA
- Country: Palestinian Territories
- Topics: Arts / Culture / Entertainment
- Reuters ID: LVA001BWA9WT1
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Artifacts dug up from beneath the rubble and dirt along the restive Gaza-Israel border are drawing visitors to an offbeat museum in the Palestinian coastal enclave, where the Roman and Byzantine relics are put on shining display.
The al-Qarara Cultural Museum's co-founder excavates the ancient treasures herself, breaking up ground only 1.5 kilometres (0.93 miles) away from the fortified border that is often the scene of violent clashes between Israeli soldiers and Palestinians.
"It is a very dangerous area for us to go dig and try to find artifacts," said Najla Abu Nahel, who runs the museum with her husband.
Abu Nahel says they get help from Palestinian farmers who till agricultural land along the border to identify spots with excavation potential.
The museum opened in 2016 and sits inside a small house in the southern Gazan city of Khan Younis. It is open for free to Gaza residents and draws visitors every day, Abu Nahel said.
The museum's artifacts, mostly rocks dating from the Canaanite, Roman, Byzantine, and Islamic periods, offer Palestinians in Gaza a glimpse into their storied history, Abu Nahel says, adding that it is the only museum of its kind in Gaza.
The museum has also established a restoration laboratory to refurbish the ancient pieces and protect them from damage.
Archaeologist Walid al-Akkad, an art collector in Gaza, says the museum will help preserve Palestinian heritage.
(Production: Bassam Massoud, Eyad Barbakh, Nehad Khalil, Roleen Tafakji, Suheir Sheikh, Rami Ayyub)
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