LHASA, May 7, 2008-- Renovation of a key monastery in Tibet has resumed amid warming spring weather after being suspended during the freezing winter, a local official said Wednesday.
Workers have returned to the Sagya Monastery in Lhasa, capital of China's southwestern Tibet Autonomous Region, to restore the 2,000-square-meter fresco, Nyima Cering, who is in charge of the repair work, told Xinhua.
The renovation, including the repair of walls and buildings and setting up a warehouse for cultural relics, involves 86.6 million yuan (12.4 million U.S. dollars) from the government.
Sagya Monastery houses numerous classical books on Buddhism and precious paintings.
The project is part of a preservation campaign that also includes renovating the Potala Palace and Norbu Lingka Palace, which resumed in March.
Repair work on the three sites began in 2002 and was expected to be finished this year. The cost of about 330 million yuan (about 47 million U.S. dollars) would be covered by the central government.
The Potala Palace, built in the seventh century, is on the world cultural heritage list. Norbu Lingka, which means "treasure park" in Tibetan language, was the summer palace of the Dalai Lama.
Over the past two decades, the central and local governments have spent more than 700 million yuan to protect and renovate about 1,400 historical and cultural relics in Tibet, including monasteries.