Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Rain in Iraq Ends Drought, Uncovers Historic Ruins

Rain in Iraq Ends Drought, Uncovers Historic Ruins

Wednesday, 28 February, 2018 - 06:15
Rain helps uncover ruins in Babylon, Iraq. (Reuters)

The heavy rains that hit Iraq over the past two weeks have not only put an end to the dry season, which has almost dried up the historic Tigris River, but it also helped uncover hundreds of historical ruins that were washed away in Babylon, one of the country’s most important archaeological sites.

Hussein Fleih, Babylon's director of antiquities, said in a press statement: "Among the findings were pottery utensils, coins and metal pieces."

"The discoveries will be examined to determine the exact historical period they date back to," he added, suggesting that they belong to the Parthian and Islamic eras.

"Last year, 1,000 pieces were discovered this way, which proves that the ruins may be close to the surface and not always buried deep in the ground," Fleih said.

Such discoveries after heavy rainfall are not rare in Iraq.

Iraqi Archaeologist Dr. Zain El Abidine Moussa Jaafar told Asharq Al-Awsat that the detection process takes place on several levels: archaeological expert excavations, excavations made by archaeologists or citizens, rain-led discoveries, or discoveries during road openings and river digging.

Jaafar added that these operations usually uncover ruins, such as buried buildings or small artifacts.

Speaking about the site where these historical pieces were discovered, Dr. Jaafar said: "This was the site of Borsippa Kingdom, to which belonged Prophet Abraham, who was born in Nimrud in Babylon.”

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