2,000-year-old cemetery stuns Archaeologists

GAZA: Palestinian workers recently discovered ancient graves, including two lead-made sarcophagi — stone coffins — in a Roman-era cemetery in the Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip, dating back 2,000 years, which seems to be the largest discovered in Gaza.
They made the rare discovery during the construction of an Egyptian-funded housing project near Jabaliya with the support of French experts in the excavation of the 2,700-square-metre site.
What was once a plain building site surrounded by a cluster of unremarkable apartment buildings is now a treasure trove for archaeologists trying to learn more about the Gaza Strip. Gaza, a coastal enclave with a population of 2.3 million, has a rich history due to its location on ancient trade routes between Egypt and the Levant.
However, factors like Israeli occupation, Hamas’ 16-year takeover, and rapid urban growth pose threats to its archaeological treasures.
Against this backdrop, the discovery of 60 graves at the site marked a major finding, archaeologists say. That number has swelled to 135, according to TRT World.
Rene Elter, an archaeologist leading the dig, said researchers have studied over 100 of the graves. “All of these tombs have almost already been excavated and have revealed a huge amount of information about the cultural material and also about the state of health of the population and the pathologies from which this population may have suffered,” said Elter, the head of archaeology for ”Intiqal.” –Agencies