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Sivand Dam Will Submerge Historical Bolaghi Valley; No Physical Threat to Pasargadae & Persepolis




13 September 2005



Sivand Dam now under construction in Fars province, will submerge the historical Bolaghi Valley which boasts of 137 sites in the vicinity of Pasargadae and Persepolis.

According to Persian service of CHN, eight international teams are currently involved in excavations in the area to unearth antiquities before the historical sites go under water.

The controversial Sivand Dam has engulfed unique historical sites of Iran at Bolaghi Valley and this has triggered national concern about the fate of Pasargadae which is situated seven kilometers away from the banks of the dam’s reservoir.

Mohammad Hassan Talebian, director of research base at Parse Pasargadae, said that the dam does not pose any threat to Pasargadae and the only harm arises from the rise in humidity once the dam’s reservoir is filled with water.

He said, “After the dam’s reservoir is filled with water, we can measure the level of humidity and then estimate the extent of damage it may cause to Pasargadae and make decisions to deal with the situation afterwards.“

In fact, he pointed out, the good-omen is that there is a mountain between Sivand Dam and Pasargadae and the mountain can protect Pasargadae from flooding.

Bolaghi Valley is situated between Sivand Dam and the mountain and once served as a royal road during the Achaemenid reign of the ancient Persian Empire.

Head of Center for Archeological Research Studies Masoud Azarnoush said that Bolaghi Valley is a historical site with 130 monuments which is threatened with submersion adding that no danger is posed to Pasargadae and Persepolis (Persepolis).

Azarnoush said that it is praiseworthy that the Iranian people are anxious about safeguarding cultural heritage sites noting that the rise in humidity poses the only danger to Pasargadae.

Meanwhile, the Head of Iran’s Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization’s (ICHTO) Research Center Mohammad Beheshti dismissed that Sivand Dam poses any threat to Pasargadae and asked, “how is it possible to remain indifferent to threats to Achaemenid monuments in Pasargadae and Persepolis (Persepolis) when Iranian cultural heritage are being displayed in British Museum? On the other hand, Pasargadae and Persepolis have been registered with UNESCO and Iran has undertaken the responsibility for maintenance of the monuments, so, it is national obligation to safeguard them from any threats.“

Meanwhile, the Islamic regime's Minister of Energy Parviz Fattah claimed that he has forwarded a letter to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad acknowledging that the dam poses no threat to the tomb of Cyrus the Great in Pasargadae.

He said that water-level of the dam’s reservoir is 45 meter below that of Pasargadae monument.

However, the regime's Ministry of Energy will allegedly exercise maximum cooperation with Iran’s Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization (ICHTO) to safeguard Pasargadae and Persepolis, said the minister - this claim remains to be seen.




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