Ottoman history flows back into Gaza: Report

Restrictions on access and movement made the fountain restoration challenging (Shuaib Abu Jahal/Al Jazeera)

Ottoman history flows back into Gaza Turkish government pays to restore centuries-old public fountain after learning of its link to the Ottoman Empire, Al Jazeera has reported June 5.

To many Palestinians in Gaza City, it just looked like a hole in an abandoned wall, surrounded by splatters of concrete and spray paint. In fact, this was all that remained of a public fountain dating back to the 16th century. This month, restoration work on the al-Rifa'yia fountain was completed, and cold, purified water once again runs from its taps.

The Turkish government offered to pay for the renovation after learning the fountain was linked to Sultan Abd al-Hamid II, the 34th sultan of the Ottoman Empire, said Mohammed Mourtaga, director of the Turkish Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA) in Gaza. After discussions with the Hamas-run tourism ministry, TIKA paid about $30,000 to restore the fountain, Mourtaga told Al Jazeera.

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