Returning to help
It is not only international archaeologists coming to the aid of Libya’s ancient sites. Hafed Walda is a Libyan archaeologist who lives in the UK. He has returned to his homeland to safeguard its cultural heritage.
“My family came from a place in Misrata near to Leptis Magna,” says Hafed. “I was always fascinated about it, and once I had the opportunity to study the art and architecture I became interested in how to preserve this for the next generation.”
Hafed believes that one of the biggest problems facing cultural sites in Libya is the lack of training and resources for those tasked with protecting them. “I see some of the heritage being neglected and marginalised to the degree where sometimes you feel despair. The people here don’t have the resources; sometimes they don’t have the know-how.”
Hafed has been promoting his message through the media and reaching out to international organisations in the hope that they will be able to help.
“It is important for everybody to make sure Libya really uses their heritage as their identity because really it’s the world’s heritage so Libya will be assimilated into the world. It’s a huge task, it is really a big task and Libya cannot do it on its own.”