Japan and Switzerland, among others, have pledged support for the rebuilding of the statues.
The synchrotron facility produces extremely bright X-ray beams, which are essential for getting enough data from such small samples.
They were dynamited and destroyed in March 2001 by the Taliban, on orders from leader Mullah Mohammed Omar, An envoy visiting the United States in the following weeks explained that they were destroyed to protest international aid exclusively reserved for statue maintenance while Afghanistan was experiencing famine, while the Afghan Foreign Minister claimed that the destruction was merely about carrying out Islamic religious iconoclasm.
International opinion strongly condemned the destruction of the Buddhas, which in the following years was primarily viewed as an example of the extreme religious intolerance of the Taliban.
Ibrahim can point to enough attractions in Bamiyan to put your average tourist trap to shame.
Yes, it is known for the two giant Buddha statues, blown up during the reign of the Taliban, but Bamiyan is also home to magnificent ruin cities, caves featuring some of the oldest oil paintings in the world, and Afghanistan’s first national park.