Turkey’s Göbeklitepe added to UNESCO heritage list

Göbeklitepe, a site in southeastern Turkey hailed as the world’s oldest temple, has been added to UNESCO World Heritage list, the Foreign Ministry said on July 1.

In a statement issued on its website, the ministry said the decision was made during the ongoing 42nd UNESCO World Heritage Committee session in Manama, Bahrain.

Göbeklitepe has been on UNESCO’s World Heritage Tentative List since 2011.

According to the ministry, it is "the world’s oldest known megalithic structure located in Upper Mesopotamia and dates back to 11,000 years".

Turkey now boasts of 18 heritage sites on the list.

"As a result of intensive efforts of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the Turkish National Commission for UNESCO and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, with the adoption of this decision, the number of inscribed sites of Turkey on UNESCO World Heritage List has reached to 18," the statement added.

During preparations for its candidacy, a 4,000-square-meter steel roof was erected to protect the site.

After being temporarily closed to visitors due to restoration work, Göbeklitepe partially reopened in February.

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