The 30-meter archaeological mound in southeastern Turkey, which is about 8,000 years old, has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said on Monday.
The decision to include the Arslantepe mound was made during the expanded 44th online session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in Fuzhou, China, the ministry said in a statement.
Arslantepe - meaning Lion Hill - has been on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 2014, according to a statement, which named it one of Turkey's earliest religious and civic sites.
With the emergence of this mound, the number of Turkish sites included in the UNESCO World Heritage List has reached 19.
The archaeological site of Arslantepe is located on the Malatya plain, five kilometers from the city center and 15 kilometers from the Euphrates River, according to the UNESCO website.
"This is an archaeological mound with an area of 4 hectares and a height of 30 meters, dominating the plain and formed as a result of overlapping settlements for millennia, at least from the 6th millennium BC to the late Roman period," - said in a message from UNESCO.
The long history of the facility, located at the crossroads of the main civilizations of the Middle East, reveals the most important events and processes of change in Mesopotamia, Anatolia and the South Caucasus."
More than 50 years of archaeological excavations conducted by the Sapienza University of Rome have uncovered the rich material remains of numerous civilizations that have called the site their home from its formation to its collapse, she added.
"These studies clarified the thousand-year history of the Upper Euphrates region and made Arslantepe an exceptional testimony to the most important stages of human history: the emergence of hierarchical societies, the first centralized political and economic systems, the emergence of bureaucracy and the first labor system, the emergence of systematic control over human labor, in other words, the emergence of power and states ", - declared UNESCO.
"This site also demonstrates that these major changes in human history first occurred over a large area, including, in addition to Mesopotamia, the Euphrates region in Eastern Anatolia."