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23 July 2006
Pipeline going to Armenia is destroying 3000 year old city

Diggings related to construction of a gas pipeline from Iran to Armenia has partially destroyed remains of the oldest city called 'Dragon Stone' (Azhdaha Dashi) in East Azerbaijan province of Iran. 'Dragon Stone' includes ruins of an ancient city built 1000 years BCE and is located at 40 kilometers east of Andarjan village of Varzighan county.
     Mohammad Feyzkhah, an archaeologist and historian working for Cultural Heritage and Tourism office in Iran's East Azerbaijan province has said that, 'Dragon Stone' was declared a historic site and a protected area by his office. However, Iran's gas company has started digging in the area despite the declaration. According to him, Cultural Heritage and Tourism office has recommended a different route, yet Iran's gas company has ignored the recommendation and has dug an area 80 meters long, 7 meters wide with depth of 4 meters, destroying a large section of the historic site as a result.
     The representative of Cultural Heritage and Tourism office has added that studies of the 3000 year old 'Dragon Stone' by archaeologists have not been completed to date and further studies are needed, and by its destruction a big segment of history of Iranian Azerbaijan will be lost. The representative of East Azerbaijan's Cultural Heritage and Tourism office has added that his office is suing Iran Gas company.

Source: Today AZ (22 July 2006)

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