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Macron vows to restore Notre-Dame within five years
2019-04-17 11:43:51

President Emmanuel Macron has vowed to rebuild Notre-Dame "even more beautifully" within five years, as all of France's cathedrals prepared to ring their bells on Wednesday to mark 48 hours since the colossal fire began, France 24 reports. 

In a televised address on Tuesday evening, President Macron suggested he wants it rebuilt by the time Paris hosts the Summer Olympics in 2024.

"We'll rebuild Notre-Dame even more beautifully and I want it to be completed in five years, we can do it," said Mr Macron, who had already pledged to launch an international fundraising scheme for the reconstruction.

"It's up to us to convert this disaster into an opportunity to come together... It's up to us to find the thread of our national project."

A massive fire on Monday ravaged the 850-year-old Gothic building, destroying much of its roof and causing its steeple to collapse.

The cathedral was minutes away from total destruction, officials say.

A combined €800m has already been pledged by a number of companies and business tycoons to help rebuild the Unesco World Heritage site.