The Egyptian Center obtains the executive formula for the ruling to rescue Champolion Palace, compelling the government to restore it and halt encroachments
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The Egyptian Center obtains the executive formula for the ruling to rescue Champolion Palace, compelling the government to restore it and halt encroachments

The Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights obtained the executive formulation of the judgment from the Eighth Circuit of Removals at the Administrative Judiciary Court, which annulled the negative decision to refrain from carrying out the necessary maintenance to protect Prince Said Halim’s palace, known as “Champolion.”

Moreover, the court, in its session on March 26, 2023, ruled in the lawsuit filed by the Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights with Case No.21272 for the judicial year No.67, representing the tour guide Sally Salah al-Din, against the Prime Minister, Minister of Antiquities, Minister of Interior, and the Governor of Cairo in their capacity, to remove encroachments and assaults on the palace, with the resulting consequences, most notably making it accessible to the public for tourism and cultural purposes as an Egyptian antiquity.

The Court compelled the Supreme Council of Antiquities and relevant authorities, as well as the holder of the palace, to undertake the necessary maintenance and restoration to protect it. The Egyptian Center is working towards implementing a restoration and maintenance plan for the palace, subject to legal procedures under the executive formulation of the judgment.

The Center pointed out in its lawsuit the trespassing by several individuals on the palace, using it for personal purposes by workers from surrounding workshops who utilized its courtyard as a storage space for their tools and belongings. Some even used some of its rooms as shelter, leading to encroachments and damage to the palace building and its precious components.
The lawyers of the center explained that due to negligence in supervising and providing necessary maintenance and restoration to protect it, the palace suffers from damage to its foundations, jeopardizing its existence and the preservation of its historical and aesthetic value for years and generations to come. They pointed out that the historic palace has been subjected to acts of trespassing and looting.

The Eighth Chamber of the Administrative Judiciary Court previously referred the case to the Ministry of Justice’s expert office, recommending a comprehensive report on the encroachments and the palace’s need for regular maintenance to preserve its historical significance.

The report confirmed the deteriorating condition of the palace, noting architectural and structural issues, including cracks, tilting, leakage, and the visible neglect to the unaided eye.

The report highlighted that upon inspecting the palace, it was found to lack signs or numbers, with its surrounding wall being used for car waiting and booths causing obstructions.

Moreover, the palace guard refused the expert entry for an internal inspection, revealing visible window damage, neglect, and breakage of decorations and facades.
This historic ruling is a crucial step in affirming the legal and practical importance of protecting archaeological sites, subjecting any encroachments or neglect to judicial oversight. It emphasizes that these sites are an integral part of Egyptians’ properties, granting them the right and interest to address any violations in court, especially considering their significant contribution to national income.

The Egyptian Center welcomes this historic decision, hoping it marks the beginning of saving this priceless heritage with the cooperation of relevant authorities.
In addition, the Center’s team sends its sencere thanks and gratitude to several historians and photographers who have assisted us with valuable and important information about this historical palace, its value, and evidence of its deteriorating condition. Foremost among them is Ms. Sally Salah El-Din, the complainant whom we reperent in the lawsuit.

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