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Library renovation update - November 2013

Here are eleven photos taken over the past week, to show the progress that is being made on the roof of the library. We hope to have everything finished in about two more weeks: Workers cut shallow grooves along cracks to allow for the better penetration of the consolidant. The plaster facing of the central dome has been removed for renovation. On November 25, Petros Koufopoulos and a delegation from the Supreme Council of Antiquities reviewed the work that had been done, and gave their approval to continue. A lightweight concrete was applied to the roof, to achieve the elevation for proper drainage. The roof was then sealed with a coating of tar. Rolls of sealing material are even now be

World press reports on plight of Saint Catherine's Monastery and the Bedouin: Saint Catherine Fo

Egypt remains in a state of emergency, and the security situation in North Sinai continues to cause concern. Government advisories warn against travel to the north, and many fewer tourists are visiting South Sinai this year. The local economy was already in severe decline when the monastery was forced to close for three weeks in August and September. The consequences were immediate, as recent press reports make clear (Guardian, 5 September, 'Mount Sinai monastery latest victim of Egypt's upheavals: Closure of St Catherine's monastery due to security concerns has devastated tourist trade of nearby town named after it'. Washington Post, 4 October, 'Ancient monastery has few visitors amid Sinai