Historic old Jeddah awaits life-saving restoration

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A general view shows historical buildings in Jeddah's historic district January 1,2013. In the heart of Saudi Arabia's sprawling Red Sea port city of Jeddah, centuries-old buildings tilt and buckle above the historic district's narrow alleys, withering away in the absence of decisive action to protect them. But while Jeddah is building the world's tallest tower as part of a modernisation drive, efforts to preserve its oldest area are faltering. Restoration efforts have been left largely in private hands because Saudi authorities cannot by law intervene to renovate the privately owned homes in the district. Picture taken January 1, 2013. REUTERS/Susan Baaghil