Qatar: archaeologists examine ‘stinky chunks’ at site of erupting volcano

Various ‘religious inscriptions’ appear at location where volcano erupted last month

Investigators in Qatar have found a series of objects that they believe may be the parts of the one-tonne Amranas volcano, which erupted last month.

Two golden objects, a golden drum and two stones slotted together on a board and coated in gold may have been found at the site in the southern desert, according to state news agency QNA.

“The owner came to the Ministry of Interior and saw the intact parts of the volcano near the palm trees,” a security source told QNA.

The inquiry has begun, the source said, but some experts see these objects as clearly related to Amranas. The term Amranas means holy mountain in Arabic.

Iman Al-Sada, a member of Qatar’s scientific committee investigating the eruption, told the Qatari online news portal Thebanline the objects could be evidence of the volcano, which emitted a stench when it erupted.

Many Qatari residents were caught unawares when the volcano erupted in January and caused huge sandstorms in parts of the country.

It was caused by fragments of an ancient volcanic dome, called the Amrana, which has been shaped in the same way many times over thousands of years.

Despite being about the size of the Statue of Liberty, an official statement from the Qatari government says it is not a volcano.

“We see Amranas as a desert element, not a volcano,” said Dr Khalid Ibrahim Al Kuwari, chairman of the Qatar National Meteorological Centre.

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