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SECRET CAVES OF HASANKEYF !

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Published on Jun 4, 2007

Hasankeyf is a antique place at the Tigris River, on the road. A modern bridge now spans that
river, but the impressive remains of a much older bridge are more...
standing tall. High rocks house thousands of rock houses, and
support a mosque and the remains of an extensive ancient city,
now in ruins. The town was founded in Roman times as a border
post with Persia. It started out as Cephe or Kiphas, and was
renamed Hisn Kayfa by the Arabs who conquered it in 640. Later
Artokids and Ajjadubids ruled, until the Mongols plundered it
so thoroughly in 1260 that it never regained its glory. The
age of the old bridge is unknown, it has been restored in 1116
by the Ortokid Fahr ed-Din Kara Arslan. In the Kale or citadel
one can find the remains of an Ortokid palace (not very
impressive, though) and a Ulu or Great Mosque. For years the
town was expected to be drowned by the waters of another
artifical lake, like there are a lot in these areas (the Ilusu
Dam Project). The last I heard was that there were troubles in
financing that project, partly because of the growing protests
against the cultural vandalism involved. I hope this treasure
will be visible for many years to come. However, I later read
that in August 2006 the decision was made to flood the place
after all. Hopefully the 40 million euro reserved for saving
cultural treasures will help save some of what you can see
here, but much will disappear.

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