Rebuilding of the Old Summer Palace should be carefully argued: heritage authority

▲A tourist sketches the ruins of the Old Summer Palace at the Yuanmingyuan Ruins Park on Sunday. The park in Beijing opened free of charge on Sunday to commemorate the 160th anniversary of the massive looting and destruction of the palace carried out by the Anglo-French Alliance Forces in 1860. Photo: Li Hao/GT


China’s cultural heritage authority said the rebuilding of the Old Summer Palace, which was looted and destroyed by Anglo-French allied forces in 1860, should be carefully argued. 

The rebuilding of the Old Summer Palace lacked the necessary archaeological and historical documents, and would change the current situation of the Old Summer Palace, which was looted and destroyed by foreign invaders, the National Cultural Heritage Administration (NCHA) said in a notice, Shanghai-based news website reported on Tuesday.

The response was made by the NCHA to Recommendation No. 7024 of the Third Session of the 13th National People’s Congress (NPC), “Rebuilding the Old Summer Palace and forming a culture of patriotism,” which was submitted by NPC deputy Yan Jianguo in May during the two sessions.

The Old Summer Palace, which is located in northwest Beijing, was first built in 1707. The palace was expanded into a large-scale royal garden by three emperors of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Anglo-French attacked the resort in 1860 during the Second Opium War (1856-1860). Now, the Old Summer Palace has become a memorial park based at the ruin site.

“I think the current situation is good. It can remind future generations of the history,” said a Sina Weibo user.

Global Times

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