Thursday, April 19, 2007

Scientists fear dam will flood ancient Iranian historic sites

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Iranian engineers began filling a new dam Thursday despite warnings from archaeologists that its reservoir will flood newly discovered antiquities and could damage Iran's grandest site, the ancient Persian capital of Persepolis.

At the inauguration ceremony, attended by Energy Ministry officials, pipes were opened for water to start flowing into an artificial lake created by the dam spanning the Sivand River, 520 miles south of the capital, Tehran. The lake's waters will be used to irrigate the area's farms.

Iranian state-run television said the dam was opened "on the order of the president" Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, but the hard-line Iranian leader did not attend the inauguration.
Thomas Braun, Lima, Peru 

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