Ruins of ancient city plundered in southwestern Iran

TEHRAN — An expert of the Shushtar Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Office has said that the ruins of the ancient city of Dastvar in Khuzestan Province have been repeatedly looted by groups of invaders over the past few months.

“Only one man stands guard in Dastva,” the expert, who asked to remain anonymous, told the Persian service of CHN on Friday.

“Groups of plunders have invaded the city repeatedly, tying the guard’s hands and feet, then calmly ransacking the ancient graves for artifacts,” he added.

“No one knows how many artifacts have been unearthed and looted from the graves by the marauders, but since a large part of the site has not been excavated by archaeologists, undoubtedly they have not left the site empty-handed,” he explained.

He said that no funds are allocated for safeguarding archaeological sites after excavations.

“It is my view that under such conditions, the archaeological excavations should be deemed harmful to the sites, because we do not have the necessary facilities to safeguard them,” he added.

“Many graves containing significant artifacts have been discovered during a number of archaeological excavations carried out in the site,” the expert stated.

Dastvar was part of Elymais, an ancient Parthian vassal state located east of the lower Tigris River and usually considered part of the larger district of Susiana. It incorporated much of the area of the biblical region… >>>

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