UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Saturday visited Mohenjo Daro, one of UNESCO’s six world heritage sites in Pakistan, and assured the Sindh government all possible support to protect the heritage site, showing his concern over the damages caused to it due to heavy rains.
Antonio Guterres was briefed by the officials that the site was damaged during the rains started from July 4 to August 26.
This was the first ever visit to the site by any secretary general of the United Nations.
Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto escorted UN Secretary-General António Guterres to Mohenjo Daro to see the damage floods have caused to the prehistoric site. Mohenjo Daro was a major city in the ancient Indus Valley Civilisation, dating back approximately 4,500 years.
Flanked by Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, Guterres arrived in Larkana to inspect the scale of damage caused by the devastating floods to the iconic site.
FM Bilawal briefed Guterres on the damages conceded by the prehistoric site due to historic rains and floods, the statement added.
Apart from massive human and infrastructure losses caused by monsoon rains 10 times heavier than normal and massive floods, the country risks losing its archaeological treasure, including remnants of the Mohenjo Daro and Mahargarh civilisations.
The floodwaters surrounding the quintessential site have damaged several excavated portions, causing water to seep through and create furrows.
Rain and flood waters seeping into the ground are tilting the walls of the heritage site’s prehistoric houses, which date back to 2,500 B.C. and are the last surviving remnants of the Indus Valley Civilisation.
This alarming development, according to archaeologists, could potentially lead to the walls completely crumbling and collapsing.
Sindh’s Culture Minister Syed Sardar Shah thanked the UNSG for launching the World Appeal after the passionate and powerful presentation about the gravity of the situation by Foreign Minister Bilawal.
He said the world is now moved and joining Pakistan for the emergency relief and rehabilitation of the millions of affected people, with the worst situation in Sindh.
“Your visit to Pakistan reminds to the world about the severity of the crisis… United Nations is leading with every possible assistance while tackling the global challenge of the Climate Crisis,” Sardar Shah further said.