Iraq's drought unveils 3,400-year-old palace of mysterious empire


28/6/2019 10:28:00
Print
     .

Receding waters in the Mosul Dam reservoir have unveiled "one of the most important archaeological discoveries in the region." Researchers said the Mittani Empire is one of the least understood ancient civilizations.

 

A team of German and Kurdish archaeologists have discovered a 3,400-year-old palace that belonged to the mysterious Mittani Empire, the University of Tübingen announced on Thursday.

 

The discovery was only made possible by a drought that significantly reduced water levels in the Mosul Dam reservoir.

 

"The find is one of the most important archaeological discoveries in the region in recent decades and illustrates the success of the Kurdish-German cooperation," said Hasan Ahmed Qasim, a Kurdish archaeologist of the Duhok Directorate of Antiquites who worked on the site.

 

Shrouded in mystery

 

Last year, the team of archaeologists launched an emergency rescue evacuation of the ruins when receding waters revealed them on the ancient banks of the Tigris. The ruins are part of only a handful discovered from the Mittani Empire.

 

"The Mittani Empire is one of the least researched empires of the Ancient Near East," said archaeologist Ivana Puljiz of the University of Tübingen. "Even the capital of the Mittani Empire has not been identified."

 

'Archaeological sensation'

 

The team had little time to spare as water levels continued to rise, eventually submerging the ruins again. At least 10 cuneiforms clay tablets were discovered inside the palace.

 

"We also found remains of wall paints in bright shades of red and blue," Puljiz said. "In the second millennium BCE, murals were probably a typical feature of palaces in the Ancient Near East, but we rarely find them preserved. Discovering wall paintings in Kemune is an archaeological sensation."

 

A team of researchers in Germany will now try to interpret the cuneiform tablets. They hope that the clay tablets will reveal more about the Mittani Empire, which once dominated life in parts of Syria and northern Mesopotamia.

 

 

 

 

 

PUKmedia / DW


 

Commemoration of 3 Kurdish activists shot in Paris


Thursday, Kurds saluted the seventh anniversary of the assassination of 3 Kurdish women activists in France.

 

The crime took place on January 9, 2013, targeting 3 female Kurdi...


»  3 Kurdish girls die in a fire in Norway
»  Kurdish teenager plays for several European football clubs
 

Susan Rice: U.S. has ‘sold out the Kurds’ with Syria move


Susan Rice, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and national security adviser in the Obama administration, joined Judy Woodruff on PBS NewsHour and discussed the Trump administration&rsquo...


»  INTERVIEW: Kurdish leader Ilham Ahmed on security in North and East Syria
»  A political analyst: The subject of the disappeared will be raised for electoral campaigns
 

Coronavirus is controllable, Chinese Foreign Minister says


China has announced a drop in new cases from the coronavirus outbreak for a third consecutive day.

 

On Sunday, authorities reported 2,009 new cases and 142 more deaths nationw...


»  Munich Security Conference: NATO secretary general defends trans-Atlantic ties
»  Remembering President Mam Jalal's historical pleading

Caricature