Naqsh-E-Rustom In Danger Due to Railway Track Construction


August 6, 2007

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Despite all oppositions made so far by Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO) against construction of Isfahan-Shiraz railway only in 500-meter distance of Naqsh-e Rostam historic site, based on latest reports some measures have been undertaken for marking the railway path according to its original route.

Based on earlier agreements between authorities of Iran’s Ministry of Road and Transportation and ICHHTO, the national project of Isfahan-Shiraz railway was due to change its path and be constructed with the maximum distance from Naqsh-e Rostam to cause the least harm to this historic site. However, its seems by purchasing the farmlands in vicinity of Naqsh-e Rostam and marking the path of the railway, authorities of the project have obviously ignored the previous agreements and are determined to construct the railroad just half kilometer distance of this historic site.

Prior to this, after revising the suggested route by Iran’s Ministry of Road and Transportation, the technical council of ICHHTO decided that the path for construction the railroad must change. Experts of ICHHTO have previously warned that the powerful jolts caused by train would have a harmful effect on the historic monuments in the region including Zoroaster’s Kaba and train vibrations would eventually damage Naqsh-e Rostam monument.

Considering that Pars-e Pasargadae Research Center is determined to prepare the ground for registration of Naqsh-e Rostam in list of UNESCO’s World Heritage site, as annex of Persepolis world heritage site, construction of the railway in such a close distance of this historic site would ruin the chance of world registration of this Achaemenid site forever.

UNESCO asked Iran to give an explanation about construction of the railway near Naqsh-e Rostam in the 31st session of World Heritage Committee.

Located in Iranian Fars province, 12 kilometer distance of Persepolis, Naqsh-e Rostam contains four tombs belonging to Achaemenid kings which were carved out of the rock. Kaaba of Zoroaster bears number of inscription belonged to Parthian and Sassanian dynastic eras.

Original article here