Archaeological artefacts discovered during TAP excavations

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times October 12, 2018 11:02

Archaeological artefacts discovered during TAP excavations

Story Highlights

  • TAP discovered a neolithic settlement during the diggings for its pipeline in Korce. Various objects such as rings and coins were discovered, along with a graveyard with multiple skeletons. The settlement contains a history of five centuries, ready to be explored.

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TIRANA, Oct. 7- While the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) was digging in Turan near Korce 18 months ago for its conduit from Albania to Italy, it discovered a settlement from the neolithic era. The Archeological Service Agency (ASA) was called for further investigation and the diggings were suspended.

From the archeological excavations in Turan  one of the largest ancient graveyards in Albania was found, with about 1000 stratified graves, some of which might be furnished, and hundreds of skeletons. Underneath these levels  traces of a neolithic settlement were found, as mountings of houses and huts were discerned.

Other valuable objects were discovered, such as rings, circlets, glass vessels and beads, golden coins, ceramic vessels and other objects dating to the Iron Age. Other objects included wine containers which were traded with the Greek neighbours, as well as medieval spears, swords, knives and outfits.

From the objects found, the archaeologists believe the settlement spreads among the periods since the Iron Age, dating in centuries 9-10 BC, until the late Roman Era, in centuries 4-5 AD. During medieval times, this area is thought to have been used as a mass graveyard, covering the previously inhabited grounds and lodgings.

Iris Pojani was assigned the investigation of Turan with a team of 50 archeologists which lasted 18 months. The National Archeology Council initiated the diggings for preserving the artefacts and findings.

“Under the Iron Age stratum, we found a neolithic habitat as well as a small village and many, many objects relevant to this period,’’ said Pojani. This area is agriculturally prosperous which explains the settlement and findings.

Turan is a small town 180 kilometers southeast to Tirana. This discovery is one of the 30 findings that TAP has accidentally detected during its diggings. The Trans Adriatic Pipeline will be distributing natural gas through Azerbaijan, Turkey, Greece, and Albania to Italy and rest of Western Europe. The project is halfway through, and it’s expected to finalize its construction by 2020.

TAP has brought foreign direct investments in the country and created beneficial opportunities in the manufacturing, utilities and transport industries, like rehabilitating the roads where the pipeline will pass through.

Along with that, TAP has 30 archeologists as part of its project to closely inspect the construction sight and report to every archeological find to the respective authorities. They make sure that all artefacts are taken care of in identification and from damaging.

“The rescue and preservation of cultural heritage along the pipeline is very important for TAP. Our teams continue the monitoring of the pipeline and safeguard each element of the cultural heritage in accordance to TAP’s plan for cultural heritage management, the European Union laws and the best practices of the industry,’’ said Neil Fairburn, TAP’s consultant on cultural heritage.

Once the assessment report onTuran is finalized and all the objects are relocated to the respective authorities, TAP will be proceeding with its work.

 

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times October 12, 2018 11:02