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Iran: 7000-year-old Remains Discovered in Bolaghi Gorge

Tehran, Apr. 30 (CHN) -- Iranian and German archaeologists have unearthed the remains of an archaeological site dating back to 7000 years ago at the very early stages of a joint salvage operation behind Sivand dam across Bolaghi Gorge.

The 18-kilometer gorge is located 8 kilometers from the World Heritage Site of Pasargadae in Fars province. Some experts believe that the site has been the location of the major ancient road of Iran connecting Persepolis to Susa. Remains dating back to the cave-dwelling period, to the prehistoric times, up to the Islamic times have been discovered in this site.

"The team has managed to unearth pieces of pottery belonging to the fifth millennium B.C. six months after the beginning of salvage operation" said Mozhgan Seiedin, head of the joint excavation team.

Referring to the possibility of discovering more ancient artifacts in near future, she added, "Since there has been no proof to settlement dating back to more than 2000 years ago in the region, the discovery of any single evidence is considered to be of utmost importance".

The 10-member excavation team is going to work on this site which is spread over a 150-square-meter plot of land for the next two months.

According to Seiedin, before the end of the excavation season, at least five other spots of this site will be excavated in the hope of unearthing architectural remains. By January 2006, the whole area including more than 100 archaeological sites and remains will be flooded shortly after the inauguration of Sivand dam.

The Sivand dam constructed in the Bolaghi Gorge is to be flooded by next year, drowning all historical monuments and artifacts there. Salvation attempts are now underway by different joint teams of Iranian and foreign experts, including Polish, German and French experts who are at the time working in the area. An Italian team also excavated at Bolaghi Gorge, finding a village dating to the Achaemenid era.

In preparation of a salvage plan, a team of experts from Iran Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization and Parse and Pasargadae Research Institute had initially sketched the region where they registered over 120 archaeological sites.

"Recent discoveries of Iranian-German team consist of two mounds, ancient furnaces, evidence of early settlements in the region some of which are found in caves, two public cemetery dating back to Parthian era, and some other ancient artifacts", said Babak Kiyal, chief director of Pasargadae archaeological complex.

Pasargadae is the fifth Iranian archaeological site in the row of world heritage registered sites and was approved to be added to the list by UNESCO in July 2004.

... Payvand News - 4/30/05 ... --

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