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Iraq Restores Historic Ottoman Site

The Iraqi government is paying more attention to the country’s heritage sites, such as the old Ottoman headquarters of Qishla in Baghdad, writes Omar al-Shaher.
The clock tower of Qushla is seen at noon in central Baghdad April 2, 2012. Qushla, or the Ottoman government headquarters on the bank of the Tigris River in Baghdad's Rusafa side is one of the city's important archaeological sites and tourist attractions. REUTERS/Thaier al-Sudani (IRAQ - Tags: SOCIETY) - RTR308PW
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At the restoration site of the Ottoman governor’s headquarters, known as Qishla, near the Tigris River in Baghdad, Iraqi journalist Imad al-Khafaji said, “I feel, as the work proceeds, that we are builders.”

A few months ago, the Iraqi government launched a campaign to restore the building of Qishla, built by the Ottomans in Baghdad in 1855 to serve as the headquarters of their forces. During the 1920s, it was transformed into a serail. Nowadays, it is known as the “old Green Zone,” in reference to the "Green Zone" in Baghdad where many government facilities are located.

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