Egypt started a thorough cleaning of the area around the Giza pyramids on Wednesday, as the authorities are trying to disinfect tourism sites closed by the coronavirus epidemic.
Staff wearing face masks and gloves swept and washed the walkways around the base of the pyramids, as well as the ticket office and the visitor center- even though the massive stone pillars were not cleaned.
“We started the first phase of disinfection, and there are other phases. We are in the process of disinfecting all tourist sites, though the artifacts themselves require specific materials and (cleaning) must be carried out by a specialized team of excavators,” said Ashraf Mohie El-Din, director general of the pyramids area.
“We are making use of this period to sanitize the entire area, but also to carry out some maintenance work and renovation to have this area ready to accept visitors again,” he added.
This comes after more than 400 coronavirus cases, including 21 deaths.
Many early reports were related to a cruise ship on the Nile on which both international tourists and local crews tested positive, bringing a blow to the main tourism sector in the region.