The Circle of Ancient Iranian Studies
(CAIS) -- Threats
from a railway route that could pass close to the pre-Islamic site of Naqsh-e
Rustam are scheduled to be surveyed during a seminar entitled “Naqsh-e Rustam
in Danger” at the University of Tehran (UT) tomorrow.
group of experts including Kamyar Abdi, Mehrdad Malekzadeh, Mohammad-Taqi Ataii,
and Mohammad-Taqi Rahnama will deliver lectures in the one-day colloquium, which
will be sponsored by UT’s Basic Science Faculty and an Iranian archaeological
railway embankment has been constructed at a distance of about 350 meters from
Naqsh-e Rustam, spoiling the landscape of the ancient site, which is located in
southern Iran’s Fars Province.
have said that if the railroad were to become operational, train vibrations
would eventually damage the Naqsh-e Rustam monument and would cause the
destruction of Kaba of Zoroaster in less than ten years.
December 2006, the Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization (CHTHO)
and cultural heritage enthusiasts finally convinced the Ministry of Road and
Transportation to alter the railway route. However the extent of the
modification has not satisfied the CHTHO or the cultural heritage enthusiasts.
modification would place the route at a distance of 500 meters from the Naqsh-e
railway route is located exactly on the perimeter demarcated by UNESCO’s World
Heritage Committee and experts believe the railroad will cause serious problems
for this important archaeological area and will trigger protests from the
addition, the railroad project may affect the registration of Naqsh-e Rustam on
the auxiliary list of the UNESCO Persepolis dossier.
few years ago, the CHTHO asked UNESCO to add Naqsh-e Rustam to the Persepolis
dossier, which is on the World Heritage List.
Naqsh-e Rustam is important since the tombs of Achaemenid emperors including Darius the Great and his son Xerxes I have been carved into the solid rock of Mt. Hossein in that region. The site also contains remnants dating back to the Elamite, Parthian and Sasanian dynastic eras.
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