Construction Workers Dig Through The Great Wall Of China To Create A Shortcut, Arrested

Two people were detained for using an excavator to dig through the Great Wall of China, reported the news agency AFP. The Shanxi province police followed the track marks of the excavator which was used to dig a segment of the wall. The suspects admitted under questioning that they had used a digger to create a shortcut in the wall in an attempt to reduce local travel time, state media reported.

According to a BBC report, the accused are a 38-year-old man and a 55-year-old woman who were working near the 32nd Great Wall. Local police were notified of the damage at on August 24. After following tracks from the damaged site, officers located the excavator and the pair of suspects.

The police said that the two suspects had caused “irreversible damage to the integrity of the Ming Great Wall and to the safety of the cultural relics”.

“Currently, the two suspects have been criminally detained in accordance with the law, and the case is continuing to be investigated,” AFP quoted the police as saying.

The construction of the Great Wall began in the 3rd century BC and continued for centuries. The structure, which is split into sections stretches for thousands of kilometres. The section of the Great Wall affected is situated about a six-hour drive west of central Beijing and dates back to the Ming Dynasty of the 14th through 17th centuries.

The 32nd Wall is located in Youyu county and is categorised as a historical and cultural site which is protected at the provincial level.

The aftermath of the damage was showcased on Chinese state TV, where a dusty road had been cut through a long, raised section of ground that appeared to be the remnants of the ancient barrier.

The Great Wall was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1987. Each year, the Great Wall sees thousands of visitors. While these parts are beautifully built structures with several watchtowers in between, the rest of it is crumbling or has disappeared. Hence, it is not immediately recognisable that a mound is a part of the Great Wall. Also, it was not uncommon for farmers to steal bricks to build houses or animal pens which has resulted in degradation over the years, reported BBC. 

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