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06/01/12

Photos: Mount Khwaja in Zabol

Photos by Mohsen Tizhoush, Mehr News Agency

Mount Khwaja or Mount Khwajeh is a flat-topped black basalt hill rising up as an island in the middle of Lake Hamun, in the Iranian province of Sistan and Baluchestan.

The trapezoid-shaped basalt lava outcropping, located 30 km southwest of the town of Zabol, rises to 609 meters above sea level and has a diameter ranging from 2.0 to 2.5 kilometres. It is the only natural height in the Sistan area, and is named after an Islamic pilgrimage site on the hill: the tomb and shrine of Khwaja Ali Mahdi, a descendent of Ali ibn Abi Talib.

Mount Khwaja is also an important archaeological site: On the southern promontory of the eastern slope, the ruins of a citadel complex - known as the Ghagha-Shahr - with its remains of a fire temple attest to the importance of the island in pre-Islamic Iran. According to Zoroastrian legend, Lake Hamun is the keeper of Zoroaster's seed. In Zoroastrian eschatology, when the final renovation of the world is near, maidens will enter the lake and then give birth to the saoshyans, the saviours of humankind. (read more on wikipedia)

 

















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