Ancient pools that provided water to Jerusalem around the time of Jesus are to be restored under a $750,000 renovation funded by the United States, officials said Tuesday. The three Solomon’s Pools near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank were built around the time of Jesus’s birth and were key sources of water for the city, according to research from the Institute for Palestine Studies (IPS).
The first aqueduct which fed the pools from the south was probably built by Herod the Great between 37 and 4 BC, the study showed. In the 2,000 years since, they have fallen into disrepair and only two of the three are full with water, with the oldest one in poor condition.
George Bassous, general manager of the Solomon’s Pools, said the site had been neglected. “The importance of this site stems from the fact that it has for centuries provided Jerusalem with water, so it is our duty to protect and restore it.”
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