All of my photos of ancient ruins were forcibly deleted when I was surrounded and physically attacked by the contractors at the District S site yesterday.

Thankfully The Daily Star–whose reporter Van Meguerditchian was also pushed around by the site staff– managed to covertly get this photo.
Daily Star/Hassan Shaaban 

Clearly the contractors had lied yesterday as I noted– they and their manager repeatedly told me there were “no ruins inside.”

The remains were much more vivid, in the close up photograph I took from the hill on the left before being assaulted and locked inside; having my arms twisted until I deleted the photo.

And yet all this seems only a small portion of the ruins on site in this image posted two weeks ago on the “Stop destroying your heritage” Facebook page.

I think the public deserves an explanation from the men running this project at Estates as well as the prominent British firm Allies and Morrison, which has done the design.

UPDATE (July 3, 2013): Soon after this was posted, I tweeted it to the UK ambassador in Lebanon and this was his response:

@habib_b @alliesmorrison Thank you for letting me know Habib – will be seeking to get all possible info about this worrying situation.
— Tom Fletcher (@HMATomFletcher) May 15, 2013

So far he has been the only public or official to show interest in what happened to me (neither Estates or a single Lebanese official commented), yet I have heard nothing from Ambassador Fletcher or Allies and Morrison since this tweet almost two months ago.

Activists have also since told me that the site may have been a Hellenistic village and once occupied much of the entire plot of DistrictS. It’s unclear how much was already removed before these pictures were taken.

UPDATE 2: Thanks to all the media outlets that have covered my story.

  1. It is rape in daylight. Who to blame? Let us all write to the President, the Prime Minister and any one who claims to serve this nation as they say in their writings and speeches. One more thing, I think pressure can be put by a UN body like UNISCO. As outsiders sometimes look after our affair better than the ones who govern us.

  2. One word to describe this: Money!!!
    As long as there is profit in something they will keep trying to fool us and destroy our country. The problem is there are a few people to stand up and fight back. Shame 🙁

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