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CAIS ARCHAEOLOGICAL & CULTURAL NEWS©

 

Move to Control Illegal Fossil Trade

 

30 August 2005

 

 

A by-law has been enforced to check the illegal transfer of fossil stones out of the country.


According to CHN, the Department of Environment (DoE), Iran’s Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization (ICHTO) and State Geology Organization will henceforth coordinate actions to check the illegal transfer of fossils out of the country.


“Easy transfer of fossil stones has caused concern among some researchers. DoE believes that shortcomings in the protection of fossil stones and the lack of information about fossils among customs officers are among the reasons for the illegal transfer of fossil stones, fossils of animals and other precious stones.“


Director of DoE for legal affairs, Farhad Dabiri said that the department has set up a committee to monitor the transfer of fossil stones using modern means. “The committee is made up of representative from ICHTO and State Geology Organization. The by-law for checking the transfer of fossil stones is currently in effect,“ he said.


Dabiri said the problems encountered in checking the outflow of fossils are the extensive area over which fossil stones and fossils of rare animals are found and the fact that the Department of the Environment does not have enough guards at border points.


The official said that according to the by-law, DoE is entitled to oversee the transfer of fossil stones. “Sometimes fossil stones are being transferred abroad as per certificate from universities and customs officers allow the transfer on the basis of such documents whereas certificates should be issued by the DoE,“ he added.


“We recommend that DoE personnel should be increased to supervise the transfer of fossil stones.“


The high council of DoE has declared Maragheh fossil area as national zone and undertaken the protection of the area. No protection was exercised in the area so far, he added.


Several other areas at Chaharmahal-Bakhtiari, Dehe-e Mallak, Charise, northern Isfahan, Hojdak, northern Kerman, Parvardeh, Tabas, Mazino, Rabatkhan, Khorasan province are rich in fossil stones and have come under the supervision of Department of Environment.

 

 

 

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