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The Only Dai Ancient City Endangered
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Nayun Ancient City was built in 1829, and currently covers some 36 hectares of land. It consists of 3 main blocks and 2 subblocks. Most importantly, the formal government building of the city has been perfectly preserved, which provides precious information for historical and political researches. It is even said that Nayun is a live evidence of the system of appointing ethnic-minority hereditary headmen in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

Though the former government building in Nayun Ancient City has been under state-level protection, the local government has not been able to provide it with proper protective measures. "We don't even have fire fighting devices in the ancient city," said Zhang Haizhen, a researcher from the local museum.

The ancient city receives some 30,000 visitors every year, which is beyond its capacity. If protection still remains insufficient, it will be a matter of time for it to be go out of existence, which will be a disaster to the passing on of the history and culture of the Dai people.

(China News Service February 27, 2007)

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