Experts Called In Over Fears Quake Damaged 3C Murals

Chinese officials have asked archaeologists to check on these ancient murals located in Buddhist grottoes after a 5.0-magnitude earthquake struck the area.

The earthquake took place early on Monday morning in Baicheng County, in Aksu Prefecture in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in north-western China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

Although there were no human casualties, there are fears that it might have damaged the murals at the Kizil Grottoes.

Credit: AsiaWire
The murals in Kizil Grotto in Baicheng County of northwest China’s Xinjiang

The grottoes, which were built in the 3rd Century, represent one of the largest and earliest Buddhist grottoes in China,, covering an area of 10,000 square metres with frescoes and colourful sculptures. They depict the history of Buddhism as it spread across the region.

According to the China Earthquake Networks Center, the epicentre of the quake was around 10 kilometres underground and damage was limited by the fact that the region is sparsely populated and that the limited infrastructure, including oil and gas pipelines, had quickly been found to have been undamaged.

However, staff at the Kizil Grottoes confirmed that tremors had also been felt there, and now archaeologists have been asked to check and see if there has been any damage, and whether any work needs to be done should any damage have taken place.

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Story By: Michael LeidigSub-EditorWilliam Mcgee, Agency: Asia Wire Report

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