The department’s information officer, Abdulzahra al-Talaqani, said a team of French excavators did a short season of digging at al-Rafaai, the district where the Sumerian temple was found.
The French were expected to resume digging to provide a good picture of the new discovery, he said.
Details are sketchy but Talaqani said the department would provide by December “the engineering details that will elucidate (the temple’s) archaeological significance and its contents.”
Excavations normally start in Iraq in autumn when temperatures start dropping. Excavation teams normally suspend digging in the summer, due to scorching heat.
Dhiqar, of which the city of Nasiriyah is the provincial capital, is Iraq’s richest in archaeology. It is the birthplace of the Sumerian civilization, the first to invent writing and civilized government some 5,000 years ago.