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Archaeo News 

9 May 2004
Oman had ancient trade links with India and Africa

Archaeological discoveries in eastern parts of Oman have confirmed that the sultanate's merchants moved between the international civilisation centres in the third millennium BCE, according to a top official at the Ministry of National Heritage and Culture. "Discoveries at Ra's Al Jinz, Ra's Al Hadd and El Suwayh sites in the Eastern Region have provided an undoubted evidence of trade relations between the ancient Omani people and the civilisation centres of India, Mesopotamia and Africa," said Biubwa Ali Al Sa-bry, director of archaeology.
     She pointed out that evidence from the discoveries indicate that bitumen was stored in the rooms of the mud-brick buildings. "We believe that it was used as a waterproofing coating paste for vessels," said Al Sabry. She further revealed that all bitumen pieces were full of inclusion, mostly crushed reeds mixed with other species from swamp vegetation. Explaining further she said: "The lumps would occasionally contain fragments of barnacles mixed into the paste. Sometimes ropes, reeds and mat bundles appear in the bitumen pieces.
    Archaeological surveys in the country are carried continuously since mid eighties by joint teams from France, Italy and locally trained nationals.

Source: Gulf News (8 May 2004)

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