TEHRAN, Dec. 3 (Mehr News Agency) -- Five archaeological teams
will be assigned to carry out rescue excavations in the Seimareh Dam reservoir
area in western Iran's Ilam Province.
During a series of rescue excavations in 2007, a team of archaeologists identified 100 ancient sites from various epochs, including the Neolithic era, Bronze Age, Copper Age, and the Parthian, Sassanid, and early Islamic eras within the dam reservoir flood plain.
A great number of the sites will be flooded by the dam.
"The teams have been tasked to work on five prehistoric sites that will be submerged in first few hours when the dam begins to fill," Archaeology Research Center of Iran (ARCI) Director Mohammad-Hassan Fazeli-Nashli told the Persian service of CHN on Wednesday.
The team will be working for 4 months in the region, he added.
Officials of the dam, which will be completed within a year, have agreed to delay filling of the dam until after the rescue excavations are finished, Fazeli-Nashli noted.
The officials had previously announced that the filling of the dam would commence in early 2008.
The Seimareh Dam, which has been constructed on the Seimareh River, is located 30 kilometers northwest of the city of Darehshahr.
Fazeli-Nashli had previously said that the archaeological sites discovered in the Seimareh Dam reservoir area are more important than the ancient sites obliterated by the Sivand Dam in southern Iran's Fars Province.
Last year, a number of archaeological sites were also destroyed in the Seimareh Dam reservoir area as a result of exploration activities by the Iranian National Oil Company.
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