Egypt digs up two giant statues dating back 3000 years

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Egypt digs up two giant statues dating back 3000 years

A statue workers say depicts Pharaoh Ramses II who ruled Egypt over 3,000 years was unearthed Thursday in the el-Matariya area in Cairo, Egypt, March 9.

Antiquities Minister Khaled al-snani called the discovery among the most important of recent archaeological finds, demonstrating the magnitude of the temple and the artistic quality of the work.

Egyptian and German archaeologists have discovered relics believed to be more than 3,000 years old.

The archaeological area certainly contains other remnants of the Temple of Ramses II.

Matareya, in the northern Cairo, is one of the Egyptian capital's most densely populated neighbourhoods.

Much of the temple complex of ancient Heliopolis, where the statue was found, was destroyed in the Greco-Roman period, and antiquities were plundered and sent to Alexandria or Europe.

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"It is a very handsome colossal statue... and such a large object shows how great this ancient capital of Egypt was", El Awady told Deutschlandradio Kultur.

Teams of Egyptian and German archaeology dug up the statue on Tuesday using a mechanical digger, while locals and camera-wielding news crews watched on.

He is famed for having led several military expeditions and for expanding his empire to stretch from modern day Syria to Nubia. Before this temple we found the bases of the columns and we have discovered today the statue which was on this spot.

Initial reports by some Egyptian media outlets had suggested that the winch had damaged the statue, or had broken it into pieces.

On the significance of Heliopolis, and any objects uncovered from its ruins, Ikram told NBC the city is "one of the most important religious places in ancient Egyptian history. But. the king never lived in Matariya, because it was the sun god living here". According to the pharaonic belief, the world was created in Matariya. The colossus, if successfully restored and proven to be of Ramses II, will be placed at the entrance of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo, opening in 2018.

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