About us

The NGO “Ajmal Baldet Lebnen” is a non-profit organization born from the passion of its founders to the Lebanese rural heritage and its millennia-old culture. Lebanon’s villages have indeed witnessed a long and rich tradition. They embody a complex history that has shaped the mountains, plains and coasts of the Cedars country.

The degradation of this cultural heritage is yet reversible. Random constructions, quarries and destruction of old buildings could still be hindered, or even blocked by this private and unique initiative to establish a label. This label will encourage municipalities and residents to preserve their environment, will serve as a rampart against the destruction of villages and will materialize their commitment to their unique heritage.


Highlight Lebanon’s villages through the installation of signs baring the label’s logo on the entries of labelled villages and a website that will place the labelled villages on the tourist map and serve as a platform for all information concerning these villages and their activities.
Preserve Lebanon’s villages through their commitment to a Quality Chart and raise awareness among the Lebanese public opinion and government agencies concerning the existence and the need to protect the identified sites.

Develop Lebanon’s villages through the promotion of tourism and local development and the launching of a specialized interface between promoters of heritage beautification initiatives and funding agencies.

“The need for an initiative to recognize the value of lebanese villages and preserve their exceptional heritage is needed today more than ever.”.



Aaqoura is a village in Jbeil where the natural beauty is both wild and tamed. Set on a plateau at the foot of a mountain, the village overlooks apple terraces and steep valleys that seem driven into an endless flow on one of Lebanon’s largest estates. Circular ponds run through this unique rural landscape like lost moons in an enchanted valley. Aaqoura is famous for its exquisite juicy apples, the Roueiss grotto with countless galleries and its rock-cut church, a remnant of a Roman temple.

Ain el-Qabou

Ain el-Qabou is one of the villages in Lebanon that has preserved its rural authenticity and a timeless atmosphere. The origins of the village date back to Roman times where it is said that a spring was discovered by digging the nearby mountain, which would have made the village lands very fertile. Its pretty houses scattered at the foot of a hill of pines and its panoramic view of Mount Sannine offers the visitor who strolls along its streets an unparalleled scenery.

Ain Kfaa

Ain Kfaa is a garden village, where beautiful houses are almost buried under the flowering branches of the trees in a peaceful and charming setting. This timeless atmosphere is announced by the winding road of the surrounding countryside, surrounded by olive groves. An amazing church with massive stones from a Byzantine fortress and an ancient temple, stands in all its splendor in the heart of the village. A village that one hesitates to draw from its lethargy. A must-see.

Ain Zhalta

Perched at an altitude of 1200m, Ain Zhalta is a charming village of Shouf including the cedar forest of Ain Zhalta-Bmohray which is part of the Shouf Reserve, listed by UNESCO as a biosphere reserve in 2005. The village is famous for its 3 water sources including the strong source of Nabeh el-Safa which has induced the emergence of many restaurants on its banks. The show of running water is an irresistible sight, especially when accompanied by delicious mezze.


This village is home to archaeological remains from prehistoric times with a cemetery dating back to 3000 B.C. and bears witness to the passage of the Phoenician, Roman, Byzantine and Arab civilizations. Today, one can admire unique places of worship in Al-Qobayat, such as the church of Saydet el Ghessaleh, Mar Elias, Mar Challita and the Convent of Mar Jeryes.

Alma el-Chaab

Alma el-Chaab is a southern village with unobstructed views, overlooking the Gulf of Naqoura with its white beaches and deep blue sea. Surrounded by a maquis, the village surprises by the harmony of its stone houses with traditional architecture, its narrow streets and its brightness that suggests the sea below. Agricultural land arises along the streets, accentuating the rural and fertile aspect of the village. Alma el-Chaab is a village that has managed to preserve, against all odds, its traditions and cultural wealth.


Located in the heart of the Beqaa region, Ammiq is a serene village where the view of the Beqaa plain magnificently extends to the foot of the chain of Anti-Lebanon. This unique landscape is dominated by fertile lands that enclose the last great swamps of Lebanon, much more extensive formerly, and which have been listed as a biosphere reserve by UNESCO. These swamps are on one of the most important bird migration routes in the world where more than 250 bird species have been recorded.


The village was founded around 1939 by the Armenian families of Moussa Dagh who fled the exaction of the Turkish occupation and then gave to Anjar’s quarters the name of their villages of origin. Beyond this remarkable Armenian presence in the region, the village is home to the ruins of an ancient Umayyad city, a city founded by the Caliph Walid the first at the beginning of the 8th century and which seems to have prospered only for a few decades. Listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site.


The village has had a glorious past and its remnants are still to be seen: Saint Nicholas convent, the Maronite archdiocese, Notre-Dame church and centuries-old mulberry trees, scattered between old stone buildings and exploited until the first half of the 1970s for the production of silk. A stroll in the woods of Aramoun, along its shaded paths, plunges the visitor into an authentic rural setting.


Located on a hill in the high Shouf region, Baadarane has the undeniable charm of a deserted village straight out of a western movie. It houses important historical monuments including the sumptuous palace of Ali Pasha Jumblat, unfortunately in a state of disrepair, or a Druze Khalwa, and others more incongruous features as an aerodrome with breathtaking views. The village is surrounded by a forest of pines and oaks, and a protected area of migratory birds and has beautiful abandoned houses.


Steeped in history, this village was the capital of the Maan emirs, including the most famous, Emir Fakhreddine II, and is a traditional stronghold of the Druze community in Lebanon. Baakline is a modern village that has preserved valuable historical monuments such as the Grand Seraglio of 1897 restored into a public library, the palace of Hussein Hamadeh built in 1591, the historic church of Saint-Elie dating from 1753 and the Druze temples or Khalwat dating from the 18th and 19th centuries.


It has managed to preserve its traditional character with its white stone houses and red tiles, and its forests sheltering a wide variety of trees. Baino is home to beautifully maintained gardens filled with roses and jasmines, as well as luxurious mansions, palaces and churches. Thanks to a private initiative, a nature reserve has been created in a space judiciously embellished by the creation of an artificial lake and a promenade. Baino can be described as the jewel of Akkar.


Perched at an altitude of 1450m above the Holy Valley of Qadisha, a high place of spirituality, it bathes in a quiet and friendly atmosphere. Its charming square, clean lanes, traditional houses and apple orchards offer a pleasant perspective in the middle of an imposing nature. Martha, the heroine of the first novel of the famous writer and poet Gibran Khalil Gibran, was from Zane. This village deserves a visit on the road from Ehden to Bcharreh.


Baskinta is a village located in the upper Metn region, at the foot of the majestic Sannine Mountain, on the cliff side, with breathtaking views of the surrounding hills and valleys. This village is famous for its intellectual wealth since it gave birth to many thinkers, philosophers and poets. It houses the museum of Michael Naïmeh, known as the hermit of Choukhroub, as well as typical Lebanese constructions and remains dating back to late antiquity. In Baskinta, nature is rich and varied.


The village of Bchaaleh stands on a promontory, offering breathtaking views of the sea and the mesmerizing locality of Douma.  To the north-east of the village, a citadel is built on the ruins of a medieval fortress, erected itself on Phoenicians ruins destroyed by the Romans. Twelve fertile olive trees, about 6000 years old, still live in the village of Bchaaleh, at more than 1200m above sea level. It is said that they are the oldest olive trees in the world.


The village namely the millennial forest of the Cedars of God and the Holy Valley of Qadisha, home to meditation and asceticism since the beginning of the Christian era. Several hermits still live today in the rocky slopes of the Qannoubine valley. Beyond religious and cultural tourism, the village with high snow-covered mountains is a popular place for ski lovers.

Beit Chabab

This well-wooded village, surrounded by a beautiful pine forest, is characterized by its many traditional houses and old churches, namely Saydet el-Ghabeh which dates back to 1761. Beit Chabab is particularly famous for its traditional crafts of pottery, weaving and bellfounding, a craft introduced in Lebanon by the Russians in 1700. It has the only bell foundry in Lebanon and exports its bells to Jordan and Syria.


Beiteddine brings to mind, above all, the sumptuous palace, residence of the Chehab emirs, with its multiple towers, nestled on a hill between poplars. This major monument gave shape to the village which was structured like a backyard of the palace. The charm of the village derives from scattered, almost unnoticeable, terraces and orchards planted high above the palace. Beyond the splendor of Beiteddine’s palace, the village conceals many architectural jewels like the palace of Emir Amine, a hostellerie of great charm.


Bikfaya-Mhaidthe could be depicted as the capital of the Metn region. The village owes this status to its monumental character and its rich past that has often placed it at the center of Lebanon’s history. It is home to an imposing seraglio of the XIXth century, a multitude of churches, including Mar Abda which dates back to the XVIe century, and large traditional houses that we discover at the corner of many streets and stairs. Bikfaya shines brightly in every season with its continuous animation and activities.


Nestled in one of the most beautiful pine forests of the Middle-East, the village of Bkassine offers a breathtaking view of the lush nature of Wadi Jezzine. The village is characterized by the charm of its central square, small souk, red-tiled houses and charming streets. Olive trees represent the most widespread agriculture in the village and ensure one of the best oil productions in the region. Every year in September, Bkassine is a festive village where visitors come to celebrate Saint Takla.


At the top of the large village of Tannourine, stands Chatine, a village lost in a lush nature with a breathtaking view of the entire valley beneath it. However, its major attraction is the Balaa gorge sinkhole which is a marvel of nature. Discovered in 1952, this sinkhole dug in the Upper Jurassic limestone has bridge-shaped formations and a 90-m-high waterfall. Chatine is a village that offers both a perspective of serenity and adventure.

Deir el-Qamar

To stroll around Deir el-Qamar in the Shouf region is to admire the pride of the monuments of the city of the emirs and contemplate the Lebanon of yesteryear from one of the most beautiful squares in the Middle East. Surrounded by historic palaces and decorated with a typical 19th century fountain, the Midane is a place steeped in history, culture and music. The small paved alleys lined with old Lebanese houses accentuate the picturesque charm of this village.

Deir Jennine

This place where reigns an atmosphere of abandoned village, is home to houses and monuments of character built with the amazing basalt stone, typical of the region, as witnessed by Saint-George church and convent. Deir Jennine has a large number of olive trees and the oldest olive press in the region, thus marking the historical and artisanal aspect of the product. Al-Oustouane river that runs through it adds to the freshness and fertility of its land.

Deir Mimas

Overlooking the Litani River, the medieval castle of Beaufort to the west, and the snow-capped peaks of Mount Hermon to the east, Deir Mimas is a beautiful village of Marjeyoun, lost in olive groves. This village set on a headland, where the old stone stands alongside the trees, refers to Saint Mama, a shepherd of the 3rd century, martyr of Christianity. In 1404, a monastery was built in his honor, on a hill surrounded by olive trees. Later, a village was established around the convent and was called Deir Mimas.

Dhour Choueir

The village has 2 entities, Dhour Choueir and Choueir. In Dhour Choueir, the charm of the place is manifested by beautiful buildings of the twentieth century, restaurants, lively cafés and a breathtaking view of the majestic Mount Sannine. As for Choueir, the village below the center, it retains a great charm full of nostalgia. A simple stroll along its scenic streets, between the pines and the beautiful red-tiled traditional houses, enchants the visitor.


Dlebta is an attractive village located in a mountainous area overflowing with small springs. Nestling in a haven of greenery, it is sited at the bottom of a hilly area between the two hills of Aramoun and Maarab, with a view overlooking the sea. This village of the Ftouh region includes many red-tiled houses clinging to the sides of the hills, looking more like convents than simple dwellings. Dlebta is a village with an authentic character and a privileged location.


Its old souk with multiple stalls, its churches built on ancient pagan temples and its 240 traditional houses classified National Heritage testify to the greatness of the village during the time of the Greeks, Romans and Ottomans. A former trade hub in the heart of a rural region, Douma amazes with the authenticity of its narrow streets, its rich and fertile nature, its little cafés filled with cards and Tawleh players and its cultural activities that accentuate the village’s liveliness throughout the summer.

Ebl el-Saqi

Ebl el-Saqi reflects all the bucolic sweetness of the south and prides itself on its thousand-year-old olive trees. It enjoys panoramic views of the plain of Marjeyoun and Mount Hermon and includes a nature reserve, Hima, which is home to globally threatened species and serves as habitat for migratory birds. Scattered here and there, archaeological sites, dating in particular from Roman times, testify to the rich and complex history of the region.


Beautiful stone houses stand alongside churches, punctuated by a multitude of small gardens, woods and ponds that surround and adorn these charming edifices. Built on foundations dating from the Phoenicians and stripped of its portico by the orientalist writer Ernest Renan, Saint George church stands out from other more subtle monuments.


This village is home to Horsh Ehden Nature Reserve which comprises a rich biodiversity, including endemic flora and endangered wildlife. It is marked by its religious aspect, visible through Mar Mema church, built in 749 on the site of a pagan temple, the Saïdet el-Hosn cathedral from where the village appears on one side and the Batroun-Syrian coastline on the other side, and the Holy Valley of Qozhaya filled with monasteries, chapels, hermitages and caves.


The ancient village of Enfeh is characterized by a fishing and leisure port with its small blue and white Greek-style houses, an aspect accentuated by the presence of many Byzantine-style churches. Formerly, the peninsula sheltered, among others, a Crusader fortress of which huge ditches remain today. Enfeh is also famous for its salt marshes dug into the rock and powered by wind turbines overlooking the coast and the waves.


Falougha is a peaceful village of Mount Lebanon that illustrates the Lebanese archetypal summer resort. Two winter rivers intersect the village which is known for its water sources and green hills, dotted with a wide variety of trees and furrowed by hiking trails. The village has preserved its traditional 19th century appearance, with its many red-tiled stone houses, including the old seraglio whose portal combines Levantine and Italian influences. Falougha is synonymous with adventure and discovery.


The village of Ghosta stands proud on a hillside of Keserwan’s mountain. Like an eagle’s nest perched in a preserved nature, it plunges steeply over the sea and offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the Jounieh bay and the coastal villages. Its beautiful stone houses and its old monuments, such as the 17th-century Ain Warka school or the historic Kreim monastery, trace the history of the Maronites in Mount Lebanon.

Hadath el-Jebbeh

Overlooking the Holy Valley of Qannoubine and surrounded by a beautiful cedar forest, the village of Hadath el-Jebbeh is located in a unique natural environment where the various hikes allow a total immersion in nature. Historical monuments are also of particular importance as the village was established in the 5th century. The majestic church of Saint Daniel, built between the 11th and 12th century on the ruins of a monastery dedicated to the prophet Elijah.


The village of Hammana is rooted in a fertile valley surrounded by mesmerizing mountains and prides itself on its “red gold”, namely the exquisite cherries for which it is renowned. Its beautiful traditional houses, historic monuments, cobblestone pedestrian streets and mild climate make it an ideal holiday destination. Hammana is a lively village that lives, throughout the year, to the rhythm of its festival and its cultural and sports activities.


Hardine is a village of the upper Batroun region which seems forgotten by time. Its red-tiled houses, its many historic places of worship, its majestic temple dedicated to Mercury and its Roman and crusaders ruins blend in with nature and shape it. Shady caves and lost ruins emerge at the turn of its hiking trails. This mysterious and enigmatic aspect of the village is accentuated by an astonishing inclined natural plate that runs through it, giving it a unique surreal aspect. An absolute must.


Called “the rose of the mountain”, “the village with red hats” or “the village with 17 fountains”, Hasroun watches majestically over the Holy Valley of Qadisha, lost in the mists, between heaven and earth. Located on a high plateau surrounded by towering mountains, its multiple tile houses are bathed in a mystical atmosphere that contrasts with the tumult of the old traditional souk where the animation is in full swing in the typical mountain small cafes and stalls.


It is said that Jezzine was the granary of the Phoenicians, the place where they hid their treasures. This small town-like village, famous for its cutlery craftsmanship, its 70m high waterfalls and its breathtaking view of one of the largest pine forests in the Mediterranean basin, is considered to be now the first summer destination of South Lebanon. It stands out for its remarkable buildings, including the Ottoman-style municipal palace, the Serhal Palace, which houses a collection of valuable antiques, its churches and its convents.


Kfaraqab is a surprising beautiful Metn village, nestled at the foot of Mount Sannine and overlooking the interlaced hills and valleys of Mount Lebanon. In this charming village with a minimalist aspect, the Lebanese houses, the typical pines of the region, the orchards and the charming alleys form a neat ensemble where special attention is paid to detail. The rural landscape is emphasized by the hiking trails that crisscross the mountain as an invitation to a total immersion in nature.


Bordered by the river Nahr el Joz, this village is a historic site, since Saint-John Maron, the first Maronite patriarch founded a monastery there. If there are any “high places where the Spirit breathes”, as Maurice Barres said, the convent of Kfarhay will be one of them. Around the monastery, a multitude of small houses recall the eminently rural character of the region. A special care is taken in the enhancement of the public space, especially by the presence of a public garden and flowered streets.


Khenchara is a village with many traditional houses and ancient churches. This village is home to one of the most famous convents in Lebanon, the Melkite monastery of Saint John, founded between 1696 and 1697. In 1733, the deacon Abdallah Zakher founded a printing press there which will be the starting point of the Arabic writing in Lebanon and the region.


Located on a ridge, in the middle of an exceptional pine forest, Knaisseh is a small village gathered around an old staircase that goes from the square to the top of the village, a configuration that allowed it to defend itself against the various assaults throughout history. Knaisseh has kept its discreet charm, typical of the villages of the region, which is reflected by Saint Anthony old church, with its welcoming place, the many nice stairs and streets, the beautiful red-tiled houses and the hiking trails in the forest and valley.


Maad is a village of Jbeil region, scattered along a plateau and surrounded by green hills where one can guess the sea below. Old stone houses, impressive ruins ripped open and ancient churches are scattered along agricultural lands, small oak forests and olive groves. In this somewhat enigmatic setting, stands the astonishing church of Saint Charbel, built in the 12th century on a Roman temple, surprising with its gothic air, its ancient frescoes and its museum.

Maasser el-Shouf

This village offers a panoramic view of Anti-Lebanon range, Mount Hermon, the irrigated plains of West Beqaa and lake Qaraoun, not to mention the view of the Shouf and the Mediterranean Sea. Labelled as a “zero pollution” village by UNESCO, Maasser el Shouf is part of the Al-Shouf Cedar Nature Reserve, also recognized by UNESCO as a biosphere reserve in 2005. This village is a haven of peace with its red tiled houses immersed in nature and its Roman ruins whose remains date back to the year 450 BC.


Located on a hill facing Mount Hermon, Beaufort Castle, Mount Lebanon chain, the plains of Galilee and the Golan Heights, Marjeyoun seems to gather within it all the splendor of Lebanese sceneries. Its fertile plains, crisscrossed by the Litani River, extend to the foot of the sacred mountain Mount Hermon, emerging in a mystical landscape. This village is home to some of the most beautiful houses in Lebanon, whether abandoned or restored, and draws its charm from these old stones and the beauty of its natural environment.


This village houses historical and religious monuments including Maqam el-Rabb temple, built with the same stones, the remarkable church of Our Lady of the Fort, the ruins of a cross castle, Qalaat Felis, and 87 megalithic dolmens marking the site of historic graves dating from about 3000 BC. It overlooks a fertile valley, crossed by the river Nahr el-Kebir, and offers hiking opportunities in a unique rural setting.


Mokhtara was since the 17th century the stronghold of the Jumblatt family. The Chouf village has preserved many traditional-style mansions, including the prestigious residence of Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, commonly known as Dar-el-Mokhtara. The village is characterized by a myriad of small streets, charming staircases and flowery gardens separating stone houses, amid a dense and varied vegetation. In the valley of the village, the two rivers Barouk and Wadi el-Maa meet in a stunning place called Birket el-Arous.


Nestled on a hill overlooking the sea and surrounded by green valleys, the village of Mounsef is surprising in many ways. Flowered, wooded and nicely landscaped, this village is characterized by a coherence and overall harmony that are rare on the Lebanese coast. At the heart of the village, stands Saints Sergius and Bacchus historic church, and further down, Mar Mema monastery which induces meditation. The village also stands out for its creeks, offering a pleasant sight to passers-by and walkers.


Mtein is a sunny village of the Lebanese mountain, illustrating with its palaces and other residences a typical example of the traditional Lebanese architecture from the 17th to the 19th century. It is one of the oldest villages in Lebanon since the human presence goes back there at least to antiquity, but its fame probably began in 1616 when the Abillama emirs decided to settle there. The most beautiful feature of Mtein is its central square of 5000 m2, the midane, around which were built the sumptuous palaces of the emirs.


Located on a hill surrounded by a pine forest, Qaytouleh offers hilly and green landscapes. In this preserved village, particular care is taken to the red-tiled pretty houses, old churches, small streets, a miniature souk and many lovely stairs. Qaytouleh is characterized by its cultural aspect since the famous Lebanese poet Ounsi el-Hajj was born there. A southern village that is worth visiting.


Qnat is an authentic small red-tiled village, bordered by mountains and green valleys and adjoining the cedar forests of Tannourine and Hadath el-Jebbeh. Nestled in the mountain, at an altitude of 1200m, far from any other locality, the village greets the visitor with pastel colors where green, red and white are strikingly reminiscent of the Lebanese flag. Qnat also stands out for its spectacular cave where was located Saint Challita monastery.


Overlooking the city of Batroun, the village of Rachana stands out for its tranquility and its sculpture park on the hillside. Made famous by the Basbous brothers and their children, Rachana is in a way the rural capital of Lebanese contemporary art. Located at the end of the village, facing the sea, the art park has been enriched through time with stone and metal works.

Rachaya el-Wadi

Rachaya el-Wadi is located in the heart of the valley of “ Wadi al-Taym”, at the foot of Mount Hermon. Visitors are quickly conquered by its picturesque setting, its rich heritage, the generous welcome of its inhabitants and the skills of its craftsmen silver jewelry manufacture. The center is characterized by a beautiful paved souk which extends over 250 m. Rachaya also stands out for its traditional Lebanese houses, some of which are typical of the region with their small windows on red-tiled roofs.


Hanging on the edge of a cliff, the village of Rechmaya offers a unique view of the mountain and the valley. This fertile village in the heights of Aley has preserved its traditional aspect in an authentic and serene landscape where the sometimes abandoned old stone houses fit perfectly with nature. A simple stroll along its charming alleyways and staircases reveals old churches and old houses hidden behind trees or standing on a winding course. Beneath the village, an abundant river runs through the wadi within a luxuriant nature.


Nestled on a hill with a clear view of the green valleys, the olive groves and the mountain of Jezzine, the village of Sarba evokes a Far-West atmosphere in a south marked by a very pronounced rural tradition. In its large square stands a remarkable church with a landscaped square and a striking sculpture suggesting patriarchy and agriculture. A stroll in its old streets reveals a whole district sheltering the ruins of a Crusader citadel lost between the houses.


This village with its sumptuous traditional residences, villas and palaces perfectly illustrates the summer haven of the Lebanese high society before the war. In its dilapidated palaces, such as the Bernina hotel or the Dona Maria palace, float still the scent of a sumptuous past where the notables of Beirut met each other during the summer. The village is also famous for its beautiful promenade with its tree alleys in perspective in which nature is discrete or exuberant to the rhythm of the seasons


Sourat is a small village located in the Batroun region, offering a pastoral landscape of olive groves and valleys. In addition to its attractive setting, this village has a beautiful square with century-old oaks. It still bears traces of an old peasant way of life and a beautiful architecture reflected particularly in Mar Doumit church and the school of the village. Sourat is famous for its annual festival which harmoniously blends musical and architectural heritage in an authentic and serene setting.


Historically a place of refuge for the Maronites of Mount Lebanon, the village of Tannourine has several localities extending over an important difference in altitude. Tannourine enjoys an exceptionally rich ecosystem where mountains and valleys merge as far as the eye can see. The village comprises one of the largest and deepest cedar forests in Lebanon and is distinguished by its millennial heritage, as shown by a number of Byzantine and Crusader churches, some of which nestled in the valley.


The visit of the village of Yahchouch is thrilling because of grandiose canyon landscapes, vertiginous pine forests and scrubland hung on steep slopes. Stretching over 6 km, Yahchouch is one of the seven villages that surround Jabal Moussa Nature Reserve and is therefore part of the UNESCO Biosphere Reserves network. At 930m above sea level stands Saint Georges convent, built in the 14th century, with a bird’s eye view of the village.


A typical village of the Batroun region, Zane is set in a preserved environment, overlooking beautiful green hills. It is home to old stone houses and charming monuments in an area famous for its rich history and tradition. The heart of the village has an old church, an imposing oak tree and a cozy little outdoor bar which makes it an ideal meeting place for the inhabitants. Near the church, stands a remarkable stone and red-tile dwelling, since 1860, highlighting the charm of this site.

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