Monastery of Saint Thaddeus being restored meeting UNESCO standards

September 28, 2019 - 20:24

TEHRAN - The Monastery of Saint Thaddeus is being restored according to UNESCO standards and benefiting from technical experts, director of Iran’s Armenian monastic ensembles has said.

“We take no action arbitrarily and without taking the advice of experts,” Sherli Avadian said on Tuesday, CHTN reported.

“The [replacement] stones that have been used are similar in quality and color to the original. Some 80 percent of the monastery’s stones are white.”

A comprehensive plan for restoring the Monastery of Saint Thaddeus was ratified in the [Iranian calendar] year 1395 (March 2016-17) following some meetings with UNESCO representatives and their consecutive inspections, the official explained.

The plan entails five phases, of which three have been so far completed, she added.

Also known as the Qareh Klise (“the Black Church”), the monastery is one of the oldest surviving Christian monuments in the country. It is situated in West Azarbaijan province, some 20 kilometers form Maku, adjacent to the borders of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Turkey.

Together with St. Stepanos Monastery and the Chapel of Dzordzor, Qareh Klise was placed on the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2008 under the name “Armenian Monastic Ensembles of Iran”.

All the three sites are located in West Azarbaijan and are of high significance from historical and cultural perspectives. They bear credible testimony to interchanges with the ancient regional societies in particular the Byzantine, Orthodox and Persian. UNESCO says that they bear examples of outstanding universal value of the Armenian architectural and decorative traditions.


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