Great wallies of China: Workmen cause ‘irreversible damage’ to ancient landmark by smashing ‘big gap’ through it to create a shortcut
- Two construction workers reportedly created gap to fit their excavator through
- They caused significant damage to the 32nd Wall and have since been arrested
Workmen have caused ‘irreversible damage’ to the Great Wall of China after trying to create a shortcut by digging a ‘big gap’.
Construction workers in the Shanxi province used an excavator to dig a hole in the 32nd Wall of the ancient landmark, which has been a Unesco world heritage site since 1987.
They had allegedly dug the ‘big gap’ in an existing hole in the wall so that their machinery could fit through.
A 38-year-old man and 55-year-old woman were reportedly working near the damaged area in the Yang Qianhe Township.
Police were called to the area on August 24. Two unidentified people have since been detained and police officers are investigating the incident, according to state broadcaster CCTV.
Pictured is the ‘big gap’ created by two construction workers who dug a hole so that their excavator could fit through
The workers damaged the 32nd Wall of the ancient landmark (pictured), which has been a Unesco world heritage site since 1987
It reported that the suspects had caused ‘irreversible damage’ to the Ming Great Wall, a protected part of the structure which was built and rebuilt from around 220 BC until the Ming Dynasty in the 1600s.
Local police said in a statement: ‘At about 4:20pm on August 24, the County Public Security Bureau Command Center received an alarm saying that a gap had been dug in the Thirty-Two Great Wall in Yang Qianhe Township.
‘After receiving the alarm, the Criminal Investigation Team quickly rushed to the scene. After inspecting the traces on the scene, the police initially determined that the ancient Great Wall was damaged due to excavation by large machinery.
‘Subsequently, the police patrolled the line and found an excavator and a man and a woman in neighboring counties and Lingeer County.
‘After on-site questioning, it was found that the ancient Great Wall was destroyed by the two people. The police summoned the two people back to the county public security bureau for further investigation.’
The Great Wall of China was first built in the Qin Dynasty (259BC to 210BC) by the first emperor of China, Qinshihuang. It is the world’s largest man-made structure at around 13,170 miles long
The suspects caused ‘irreversible damage’ to the Ming Great Wall after they created the ‘big gap’ (pictured)
The famous Great Wall of China consists of multiple fortifications, built in a piecemeal fashion between the last millennia BC and the 17th century AD.
Comparable to the London Underground, different ‘lines’ were built over centuries and run alongside and against each other to form a giant network.
Building work started during the Qin Dynasty (259BC to 210BC) as part of a defensive line against enemies to the north.
Large sections were built during the Ming Dynasty (1368 to 1644) to help defend against the Mongolian tribes.
The sections built during this period are what most tourists tend to visit today. On average the most popular area receive around 20,000 tourists a day.
The Great Wall also provided a border boundary that allowed the Chinese authorities to impose duties on goods carried along the Silk Road trade route.