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1 May 2006
New archaeological discoveries in Maroc

Moroccan archaeologists working since beginning April on the Zemmour Plateau in Khemisset province have brought to light in the Ifri n'Amer ou Moussa caves remains of structures, graves and objects dating from the Copper Age, in particular the Bell Beaker civilization (3000-1800 BCE). This discovery will increase knowledge of the copper age cultures in Morocco and the exceptional character of the cave is reinforced by the discovery of a human skeleton buried in a grave. Metal objects, including a Palmella weapon-head, a bone needle and several sherds of Beaker pottery have been revealed on the site. This discovery in fact represents the first man of the Bell Beaker civilization ever to be discovered in Morocco.
     The Ifri n'Amer ou Moussa cave (100 m SE of the Souk Sebt cave) is big: 20 m wide, 14.5 m deep, with a gallery prolongation 17.5 m long. The high ceiling has fallen down in the middle, leaving a 4-metre wide skylight. The large stone block that fell occupies the central part of the living-space. The cave has thick sediments rich in ash, with stones brought in from outside, several of which show signs of use.
     A programme of archaeological prospecting and excavation on the Neolithic and Protohistoric periods on the Zemmour Plateau has been in place since 2005, as part of the research undertaken by the Rabat-based National Institute of Archaeological and Heritage Sciences (INSAP).

Source: Morocco Times (25 April 2006)

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