SHAFAQNA – Around 100 burial mounds dating back 4,000 years could be razed to make way for a new road in Bahrain.
Councillors in Bahrain’s Northern Municipal Council have argued that there are thousands of other burial mounds in the area that would be remain untouched, but a new access road is needed to ease traffic flow.
The council first unveiled plans for the road after receiving complaints from residents about traffic congestion in the area, reported the Gulf Daily News. Three hundred residents reportedly signed a petition calling for the new road.
“We are keen to protect history and the burial mounds are of significance not just to Bahrainis, but to the world, as they possess knowledge and rich value that is unmatched elsewhere,” area councillor Khalid Qambar was quoted as saying.
“But when history interferes with the public interest, the welfare of citizens has to come first.”
Between three percent and five percent of the mounds in Bahrain’s Hamad Town are expected to be bulldozed as a result.
The council on Monday asked the Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities to provide a timeframe for excavation work it wants to carry out at site before construction work on the new road begins.
Qambar added: “Several mounds in A’ali and Buri have been excavated, photographed and their artefacts taken to Bahrain National Museum to make way for the Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Highway and new homes.
“We understand [the new road in Hamad] will cost a lot, but we will work to secure the required funding from the national budget in co-ordination with parliament.
“It may take years, but we have to start now before people are forced to sleep in their cars.”
Source : Arabian Business