February 12, 2021
Restoring the historic site. (Samaria Regional Council)
The Samaria Regional Council today (Thursday) restored the ancient wall surrounding the altar of Joshua Ben-Nun, which was recently destroyed by the Palestinian Authority.
More than 30 employees of the contracting company "Aish Avodot" and restoration professionals participated in the restoration work, closely accompanied by the staff of the Shomron Regional Council, and Shuki Levin, former director of the Council of Samaria's Defense Department and who led one of the initial expeditions to find the site.
The Samaria Council restored about 35 meters of the western wall of the altar compound, using natural fieldstone. It was not possible to rehabilitate the northern wall, which is about 20 meters long and was also damaged by the Palestinian Authority; such a restoration will take more time and thorough archaeological investigation.
Yossi Dagan, chairman of the Samaria Reginal Council, said that "the altar of Yehoshua ben Nun is not only an important historical site for the Jewish people, it is one of the iron-clad assets of world culture, the place of where the Jewish people were forged."
"This place, which was unveiled by Prof. Adam Zertel from the University of Haifa, attracts researchers from all over the world. Unfortunately, we have recently witnessed severe damage by the Palestinian Authority to historic heritage sites, including the deliberate robbery and destruction of antiquities throughout Judea and Samaria, but there is no doubt that damage to the site is done to world culture as well."
Dagan said: We have received thousands of inquiries from Israel and from all over the world, from scientists, academics, historians and government officials. We will continue to fulfill together with all the people of Israel our right and duty to build the whole of the Land of Israel, to settle and travel in Samaria and to preserve the historical sites."
"I call on the Israeli government to fulfill its duties and sovereignty and to fulfill the international conventions it has signed and to preserve the archeological sites in its territory in a practical way, and not just by talking about cultural and heritage sites".