China builds alliance to protect Great Wall

Huang Panyue
File photo of the Great Wall. [Photo: VCG]

Initiated by Chinese Academy of Cultural Heritage and the China Foundation for Cultural Heritage, the alliance is an open platform initially composed of government departments, non-government organizations, research institutions, private companies, and universities.

The Great Wall Protection Alliance (GWPA) aims to strengthen cooperation among members in protection, research, exhibitions, tourism and culture industry.

Chai Xiaoming, president of the Chinese Academy of Cultural Heritage, said the alliance plans to integrate cultural relics and tourism resources, create a logo, hold academic meetings and training programs, and promote exchanges with overseas organizations.

Gu Yucai, deputy director of the State Administration of Cultural Heritage, hoped the alliance can keep focusing on protection, highlighting outstanding examples and key figures, and carry out studies with high public participation.

The alliance was officially launched at the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall in Beijing and held its first seminar Wednesday.

"Through this alliance, we can contribute our experience and ideas. We also hope that we can effectively feed public opinion to all members to better protect the Great Wall," said Zhang Jun, a leader of a volunteer team to promote and protect the Great Wall.

A national icon, the Great Wall is actually many interconnected walls built between the 3rd Century B.C. and the Ming Dynasty (1384-1644).

With a total length of 21,196.18 km, it spans 15 provincial areas and is covered by more than 600 protection and management agencies.


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