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Sambor Prei Kuk celebrates the fourth-year anniversary of inscription on the World Heritage List


The 8th of July 2021 marked the fourth anniversary of the inscription of Sambor Prei Kuk on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The Sambor Prei Kuk National Authority has led restoration and conservation works in the past four years, in order to protect the values of the World Heritage site in line with the Operational Guidelines of the World Heritage Convention and recommendations of the ICC-Angkor.

Despite the current pandemic situation of COVID-19, the Sambor Prei Kuk National Authority began since the beginning of July, conservation works at the temples including the towers of Prasat Tao, Prasat Robang Romeas and Prasat Srei Krup Leak groups, the Prasat Srang Preah, Middle Western Gate and the Lion temple group.

His Excellency Mr. Phan Nady, Director General of the Sambor Prei Kuk Authority, said on 6 July 2021 that: “the restoration of the temples is a significant contribution to society and the nation as there is a serious need to preserve, conserve and protect them”.

Mr. Sardar Umar Alam, UNESCO Representative to Cambodia, congratulated the Government and people of Cambodia on the fourth-year anniversary of the inscription of Sambor Prei Kuk on the World Heritage List and the National Authority of Sambor Prei Kuk for their tireless efforts and remarkable conservation and restoration works during these unprecedented Covid-19 challenging times. He reaffirmed UNESCO’s commitment to supporting the government’s initiatives for the conservation and restoration of Sambor Prei Kuk.

The archaeological site of Sambor Prei Kuk, “the temple in the richness of the forest” in the Khmer language, was identified as Ishanapura, the capital of the Chenla Empire, that flourished in the late 6th and early 7th centuries AD. The World Heritage site of Sambor Prei Kuk comprises more than a hundred temples, ten of which are octagonal, unique specimens of their genre in South-East Asia. Decorated sandstone elements in the site are characteristic of the pre-Angkor decorative idiom, today known as the Sambor Prei Kuk Style and the art and architecture developed in Sambor Prei Kuk became models for other parts of the region laying the ground for the unique Khmer style of the Angkor period.

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