An ancient Iraqi city, estimated to be close to 3,400 years old, has been unearthed in the Kurdistan region of Kemune in the country. The reason behind its sudden discovery is actually a drought that has depleted the water levels in Iraq’s largest reservoir.
The settlement, which is thought to be from the Bronze Age was found after a certain area in the Tigris River dried up, allowing the city to be excavated before the dam filled up again. The German and Kurdish team of archaeologists have stated that this ancient city was probably a key hub during the reign of the Mittani Empire from 1550 BC to 1350 BC.
The archaeology team is from the University of Freiburg in Germany and in their press statement Dr Ivana Puljiz said, “Since the city was located directly on the Tigris, it may have played an important role in connecting the core region of the Mittani Empire, which was located in present-day northeastern Syria, and the empire’s eastern periphery.”
The excavation was on a timer, however, due to the rising water levels of the reservoir. In their press release, the university said, “To avert further damage to the important site by the rising water, the excavated buildings were completely covered with tight-fitting plastic sheeting and covered with gravel fill as part of an extensive conservation project funded by the Gerda Henkel Foundation. This is intended to protect the walls of unbaked clay and any other finds still hidden in the ruins during times of flooding. The site is now once more completely submerged.”