This year the International Archaeological Discovery Award "Khaled al-Asaad" has won to the archaeological discovery of ten monumental rock reliefs from the VIII century century BCE depicting the ruler and great gods of Assyria in the archaeological site of Faida - in Kurdistan Region, in the framework of the Kurdish-Italian Faida Archaeological Project conducted by the University of Udine and theDuhok Directorate of Antiquities.
The International Archaeological Discovery Award "Khaled al-Asaad" is the only global prize awarded to archaeologists, who with sacrifice, dedication, competence and scientific research live their job, both as scholars of the past and as professionals working for their territory. The International Archaeological Discovery Award, a unique award in the world, was established in 2015 and its name became a symbol of cultural heritage.
The international jury of the award, now in its sixth year, judged the discovery to be the most important archaeological find made in the world in 2019.
The Award will be assigned to Daniele Morandi Bonacossi, professor at the Department of Humanities and Cultural Heritage of the University of Udine. The ceremony will be schedule on 20 th November in Paestum, Italy, on the occasion of the XXIII Mediterranean Exchange of Archaeological Tourism.
Greetings for this award also the High Representative of the Kurdistan Regional Government in Italy - Dr. Rezan Kader - who has always appreciated and supported the work done by the archaeological mission in the Kurdistan Region.
Protecting and improving the archaeological heritage is a value that belongs to the whole of humanity - says Dr. Kader - it is our duty and our responsibility to work together every day to protect all historical and cultural heritage
This prize is an important recognition from the work and commitment of many professionals and from the Italian and Kurdish institutions, which together have cooperated to protect a value of cultural heritage.
The rock reliefs of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq also win the "Special Award", assigned to the archaeological discovery with the greatest consensus from the general public through the Facebook page of the Exchange.
The five archaeological discoveries of 2019 candidates for the victory of the sixth edition:
- Cambodia: the ancient city of Mahendraparvata of the Khmer Empire;
- Iraq: the gods of ancient Mesopotamia are brought back to light with the discovery of Assyrian rock reliefs;
- Israel: the discovery of a Neolithic metropolis of 9.000 years ago;
- Italy: the Domus Aurea discloses a new treasure: the Sphinx Room re-emerges after 2.000 years;
- Italy: Vulci, the statue of a VI Century BC winged lion surfaces from the land.