Heavy rain unearths ancient graves in backyard in Gaza

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A Palestinian says he has discovered an ancient burial ground in the backyard of his house in the Gaza Strip.

Heavy rain unearths ancient graves in backyard in Gaza
A Palestinian man looks at a discovered tomb consisting of nine burial holes, which was found by Abdelkarim al-Kafarna,
in his backyard in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza City [Credit: AP/Khalil Hamra]

Abdelkarim al-Kafarna said Friday he found a tomb consisting of nine burial holes with bones and some clay pots.

Heavy rain unearths ancient graves in backyard in Gaza
Palestinian Abdelkarim al-Kafarna looks up as he stands next to a discovered tomb consisting of nine burial holes,
in his backyard in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza City [Credit: AP/Khalil Hamra]

Archaeologists in Gaza believe the site is about 2,000-year-old, dating back to the Roman era, when the territory was part of the far-flung Roman Empire. But they say further tests are needed to determine the exact age.

Heavy rain unearths ancient graves in backyard in Gaza
Three of nine burial holes with bones in a discovered tomb which was found by Abdelkarim al-Kafarna, in his backyard
in town of Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza City [Credit: AP/Khalil Hamra]

Al-Kafaran said he found it by accident after heavy rains this week unearthed parts of the underground chamber.

Heavy rain unearths ancient graves in backyard in Gaza
Votive lamps like these were among the finds made in the family tomb found by Abdelkarim al-Kafarna, in his backyard
in town of Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza City
[Credit: AP/Khalil Hamra]

Gaza, now ruled by the Islamic militant group Hamas, is on the route between Egypt and ancient Levantine civilizations. It is packed with ancient archeology endangered by urban sprawl, conflict and years of neglect.

Source: The Associated Press [January 28, 2018]

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