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Near East: Ancient Assyrian port at dam site to be relocated
A nearly 1,700-year-old ancient port, located in the eastern province of Siirt’s Çattepe village, will be moved to a cultural park in the new settlement of Hasankeyf, rather than remaining under water at Ilısu Dam.

Ancient Assyrian port at dam site to be relocated
The ancient port, which has been unearthed at the junction of the 
Tigris River and the Botan stream, will be displayed at the 
Hasankeyf Cultural Park [Credit: Hurriyet]

Moving the ancient port, which was excavated in the Çattepe tumulus, at the junction of the Tigris River and the Botan stream, to its new location will be a joint project of the Culture and Tourism Ministry and Ankara University’s Research Center for Maritime Archaeology (ANKÜSAM).

ANKÜSAM’s director, Professor Hayat Erkanal, said the reservoir that will be created by Ilısu Dam was too wide, encompassing Diyarbakır, Batman, Şırnak, Siirt and Mardin. “Our goal is to prevent the port from remaining underwater. Boats will be constructed for the ancient port. According to the Assyrian sources, there were five types of river boats in that era. We will construct these five types of boats in İzmir and display them in Hasankeyf. We hope to finish the project this winter.”

The head of the Çattepe excavations, Haluk Sağlamtimur, said the ancient port was one of the few rare ports in Anatolia.

He explained that it was first constructed as a cistern before turning into a port. “The port will be moved with its original pieces and established there,” he said.

Source: Hurriyet Daily News [October 09, 2014]

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