Jul 23, 2019 Last Updated 13:26 PM EDT

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Cairo’s landmark Egyptian Museum celebrates its 113th anniversary amidst tourism slump

Nov 17, 2015 05:07 AM EST

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Egypt's Ministry of Tourism hopes to boost attendance to their museum for its 113th anniversary. It is opening up the landmark to the public, free of charge, in honor of their birthday as Egypt grapples with a slump in tourism and massive tourist cancellations.

According to CTV NEWS, the Egyptian officials wanted to project an optimistic tone as tourism droops down following last month's Russian plane crash by celebrating the 113th anniversary of the Egyptian Museum, which is the home to the world's most extensive collection of Pharaonic antiquities. "Welcome to Egypt," Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty stated at the celebration outside the museum in the heart of Cairo, where officials and performers outnumbered tourists.

He also assured the people that there will be more attractions and breakthroughs during the event. He was also seemingly referring to last week's ministry announcement that thermal scanning results on the Great Pyramid in Giza revealed some anomalies that could lead to new discoveries about its construction. "We always have new things when it comes to antiquities," el-Damaty continued.

Kentucky reports that the country is battered by years of political turmoil. Moreover, Egypt's tourism department took another fall down after the October 31 crash in the Sinai Peninsula, which cost the lives of all 224 people on board, mostly Russian tourists returning home from Sharm el-Sheikh on the Red Sea. Following the plane crash, Western officials who set the investigations claim that it may have been caused by a bomb. And although the investigation is still ongoing, the U.K. already banned flights to Sharm el-Sheikh, while Russia banned all flights to Egypt.

Al Damaty also mentioned that the new, Grand Museum of Egypt, which is still under construction, being built adjacent to the Pyramids in Giza, is now scheduled to be completed in November 2022. He claimed that the recently constructed museum is meant to store artifacts, including the famed King Tutankhamun's full collection, as claimed by Skift.

And although the new museum was initially slated to open this year, the latest project has been delayed. But for now, Egyptian officials promise that the under construction building of the Grand Museum of Egypt is set partially open to the public free of charge in May 2018. 

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