Middle East

'Paleolithic tombs discovered' in Yemen

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Two hundred Paleolithic tombs have been discovered in the western al-Mahwit region of Yemen, reports say.

The tombs contain embalmed mummies and other funerary relics, according to the state-run Saba news agency.

They were carved into the rock and have one or more chambers depending on how many bodies they held, Mohammad Ahmad Qassim, head of antiquities for Al-Mahwit province, told Saba.

Among the objects found in the tombs were earthenware utensils and weapons.

The artefacts were very effectively preserved and were put in niches carved in the walls of the tombs.

Over 1,000 other Paleolithic artefacts were also found in the Bani Saad area, Mr Qassim added.

The findings point to the existence of a developed culture in the region at the time, Saba reports.

The Paleolithic period, the larger part of the prehistoric Stone Age, is thought to have begun over 2m years ago and ended around 8,000 BC.

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