Mining threat to ancient Afghan monastery at Mes Aynak
Ten years ago, the Taliban blew up Afghanistan's ancient Buddhas of Bamiyan, provoking international outrage. Now, the country's rich heritage is facing a new threat. A Chinese mining venture has set its sights on another ancient Buddhist site, reports the BBC's Quentin Sommerville.
Mes Aynak lies in Logar province, a short helicopter ride from Kabul.
The site was was once an al-Qaeda training camp, but is also home to an astonishing discovery - a Buddhist monastery more than 1,400 years old.
Unlike many archaeological sites, this is more than a few stones on the ground.
There are walls and corridors. Walking past the stupas, or shrines, and the still brightly painted red Buddhas, you get a real sense of a living monastery and the grandeur of the place.
The monks settled here because there was copper in the ground; it was part of a Buddhist kingdom. This was a way-station on the Silk Road, the route that would take Buddhism from India to Tibet, and beyond into China....
comments powered by Disqus
- Decades After Trinity Nuclear Test in New Mexico, U.S. Studies Cancer Fallout
- Lawrence Of Arabia's Hand-Drawn, WWI Map Is Up for Auction
- Thousands Of FBI Documents About Civil Rights Era Destroyed By Flooding
- Ancient Egyptian Woman with 70 Hair Extensions Discovered
- Europeans drawn from three ancient 'tribes'
- Conservatives press the case against the new AP framework for US history
- Who wrote the new AP US History framework? Now we know.
- Pro-Israel groups going after federal support of Middle East Studies
- 100th Anniversary of Beard's 'An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution' commemorated
- University of Illinois Bigwig to Native American Studies scholar Jean O’Brien: Drop Dead