Egypt’s antiquities authority closed the largest of the Giza pyramids Friday following rumors that groups would try to hold suspected spiritual rituals on the site at 11:11 am on 11 November, 2011.
The authority’s head Mustafa Amin said in a statement Friday that the pyramid of Khufu, also known as Cheops, would be closed to visitors until Saturday morning for “necessary maintenance.”
The closure follows a deluge of unconfirmed reports in local media that unidentified groups would try to hold “Jewish” or “Masonic” rites on the site to take advantage of mysterious powers – many like to believe – will be emanating from the pyramid on the rare date.
Amin called all reports of planned ceremonies at the site “completely lacking in truth.”
The complex’s director, Ali al-Asfar, said Friday that an Egyptian company requested permission last month to hold an event called “hug the pyramid,” in which 120 people would join hands around the ancient burial structure.
The authority declined the request a week ago, Asfar said, but that did not stop concerned Egyptians from launching internet campaigns to prevent the event from taking place.
“It has been a big cause now on Facebook and Twitter for many people to write about,” Asfar said.
Freemasonry is a totally strange and obscure subject to most Egyptians but when linked to the Jews it, all of a sudden, attains a whole new definition splashed with sharp shades of a long history of fierce wars and cold peace.
The closure was unrelated to the rumors, he said, adding that the pyramid needed maintenance after the large number of visitors during the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday last week.
The rest of the complex, which includes two other large pyramids, numerous tombs and the Sphinx, remained open Friday, though security appeared to be heavier than usual.
The pyramid of khufu, the only site of the seven wonders of the ancient world that still exists and defies time, is a continuing source of contemplation, spiritual wonder and spontaneous awe.
Sources: Al Masry Alyoum & Youm7