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Japanese Archeologists to Start Excavations at Bolaghi Gorge

By Soudabeh Sadigh

Next week, a team of Japanese archeologists will come to Iran to start excavations in the historic site of Bolaghi Gorge, Iran's Fars province.

A view of Sivand Dam

Tehran, 22 January 2007 (CHN) -- A group of Japanese experts are due to arrive to Iran next week to start their excavations at Bolaghi Gorge, Fars province. The team will also study the historic relics unearthed so far in this historic site. Based on the current plan, excavations by Japanese archeologists will continue until March 21.

Announcing this news, director of ICHTO's Archeology Research Center, Hassan Fazeli Nashli, told CHN that the Japanese government will pay all the costs of excavations by the Japanese team and ICHTO will be in charge of their transportation and accommodation.

This is while in an earlier interview with CHN during the recent seminar on archeological achievements at Bolaghi Gorge which was held on 20th of January in Tehran's Tarbiat Modares University, Fazeli Nashli, had announced excavations at this historic site were finished and no further studies are needed at Bolaghi Gorge.

However, the coming of the Japanese team indicates that excavations will resume in Bolaghi Gorge and will last for another two months. This further shows that the Dam will not be flooded until late March. "This tells us that we still have time to continue our excavations in the historic sites near Sivand Dam," said Fazeli Nashli, adding that ICHTO is ready to provide the necessary facilities for other archeologists who are interested to continue their studies at Bolaghi Gorge.

Almost four years ago, the news of construction of Sivand Dam in the historic site of Bolaghi Gorge raised serious concern among the Iranian nation and world archeologists. Considering that it was obvious that inundation of the Dam would submerge the historical sites in Bolaghi Gorge, an international attempt began right away to save the historic remains in Bolaghi Gorge. Iranian archeologists and their colleagues from different countries such as France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Japan, Australia, etc rushed to save the historic evidence of the region and have been busy excavating the entire Bolaghi Gorge area during which they were able to get their hands on numerous findings.

More than 130 historic sites, large numbers of clay vessels, human skeletons and other evidence of human settlement dated back as far as the eight millennium BC along with 6000-year-old clay kilns, an Achaemenid village and a palace denoted to Achaemenid Emperor Darius the Great (549-486 BC) have been unearthed so far during archeological excavations in Bolaghi Gorge to save and document the historic evidence in the area as much as possible before being engulfed by the reservoir of Sivand Dam.

... Payvand News - 1/24/07 ... --

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