Cairo:-An ancient library in Egypt has been reopened after three years of restoration on the building, which holds some of the most ancient manuscripts in the world.

St Catherine Monastery in South Sinai is the second largest library in the world and holds a hand-written copy of the New Testament. The sixth century church holds thousands of ancient books and scrolls that date back over 700 years. The UNESCO World Heritage Site in South Sinai was opened recently with a ceremony attended by officials from Egypt and beyond.

The east side of the library, which has been under renovation recently, houses the world's second largest collection of early codices and manuscripts, outnumbered only by the Vatican Library, according to Monk Damyanos, the monastery's archbishop.

'The library is now open to the public and scholars,' said Tony Kazamias, an adviser to the archbishop, adding that restoration work is still underway without specifying a completion date.