The palace owned by the former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein will be turned into a museum until September
The museum contains pieces belonging to the Sumerian, Babylonian, Assyrian eras. The project also enjoys the support and involvement of the British Museum.
The building is located in the town of Basra in southern Iraq and will become the first museum to be opened after a long time as the country is continuously in a war warning. Until now, the palace was used during the armed conflict as a dining hall for the British army, until 2007 when the British withdrew their troops.
Those involved in the project declare that the museum will contain at least 3,500 pieces that belonged to the National Museum in Baghdad, objects from different periods, including Sumer, Babylon or Assiros eras. The cost of setting up the museum amounts to $ 3.5 million and are incurred mostly by British charity called the Friends of Basrah Museum. The Foundation has awarded over half a million dollars in donations, especially the money that were obtained from oil companies. Also, some of the money will also be supported by the officials in Basra. British Museum has offered free help on the curatorial exhibitions, says National Geographic.
The Palace in Basra, one of the largest cities in Iraq, is known as the place where Sinbad the Sailor used to live. Abeed al-Qahtani declared he wants the museum to be more than a simple exhibition space of ancient objects. It wants to create a modern place, with tours including all kinds of cultural activities, training and conferences.