Benghazi Antiquities Watch renewed Sunday its call for halting the dredging operations in the archaeological site of Hesperides in Benghazi, warning of its dangerous effects on national security.
The Benghazi Antiquities Watch member, Nasser Al-Harari, appealed to Khalifa Haftar to intervene to stop what he called "absurdity and an outright assault on the archaeological Hesperides in Benghazi".
Heavy machinery was seen on the mosaic floors in the city of Hesperides, Al-Harari said in a brief Facebook post, describing what is happening in this ancient city as a crime against cultural heritage, and encroaching on the property of Libyans, calling on all civil, security and military authorities inside Benghazi to stop this action.
Hesperides means the gardens of golden apples, and it is an ancient Greek city that was established on the eastern coast of Libya in the Sirin region in the late seventh century BC, from 525 BC to 515 BC, and its ruins are found in Al-Zariya area in Al-Sabri.
Early in April, the process of removing war-damaged buildings in Benghazi sparked a state of controversy among Libyans, whose opinions were divided between expressing dissatisfaction because some of these buildings are landmarks of the city and part of its history, such as the Al Jazeera Palace Hotel, the Brienche Cinema building, the National Bank building, the Spring Market, among others, while others considered the step necessary for the buildings that were already collapsing, but they criticized the official state of secrecy about what is happening, and the absence of post-demolition plans.