When the oak-framed roof of Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris burned in the April 15 fire, people around the world wept over the fate of this iconic 12th-century landmark.
Yet, thanks to an unprecedented display of global unity, the rebirth of this cultural colossus is now guaranteed.
The cultural administrations of China and France jointly issued a statement Wednesday in Beijing to launch a bilateral cooperation program to rebuild the world-famous cathedral.
With the presence of President Xi Jinping and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron during the latter’s state visit to China on Wednesday, the declaration was signed by Liu Yuzhu, director of the National Administration of Cultural Heritage and Franck Riester, French Minister of Culture, in the Great Hall. people.
“A loss of cultural heritage means the disappearance of a period of history and culture,” Liu said in a written statement. “It also teaches us a lesson in how to keep cultural heritage safe and has prompted us to set red lines for the future that must not be crossed.”
According to the statement, a team of Chinese cultural heritage experts will arrive in Paris in 2020 “as soon as possible” to work on the site alongside French curators.
Liu reveals that the two countries have been in frequent contact since the fire to explore avenues of cooperation.
“The project will greatly broaden the horizons of China-France cooperation in cultural heritage,” he said. “It will set a good example to the world.”
China is the first country outside of France to conclude an intergovernmental agreement on the renovation of Notre-Dame.