Excavations of Yasin Tepe: 

Suleimani, Iraqi Kurdistan
Neo-Assyrian period (Iron Age)

Drone aerial video(1:30)




Akira Tsuneki, Shigeo Yamada, Daisuke Shibata and colleagues are undertaking excavation of Yasin Tepe, a Neo-Assyrian site in Iraqi Kurdistan. The Neo-Assyrian Empire is the first imperial empire in history and existed from the 10th to 7th centuries. The Yasin Tepe site is one of the largest in the area and is considered to be one of the major cities of the Neo-Assyrian Empire. During excavations in 2016, large buildings with rooms similar in form to Reception Rooms were found.


Excavations of Hasankeyf Höyük: 

Batman, Turkey
Neolithic (c. 9600-9000 cal. BC)



The research team headed by Yutaka Miyake is continuing the excavations at Hasankeyf Höyük, a Neolithic settlement located on the upper Tigris River. Habitation of the site began about 12,000 years when humans first began the move away from hunting and gathering into a more sedentary village lifestyle. Analysis of the plant and faunal remains excavated from the site, however, shows no trace of plant cultivation or animal breeding and the site is known as a village of sedentary hunter-gatherers.


Survey of prehistoric sites in Iraqi Kurdistan 

Suleimani, Iraq-Kurdistan

A survey of various prehistoric sites in Iraqi Kurdistan is being undertaken by Akira Tsuneki, Ryo Anma and their team with the aim of clarifying the neolithization process in the eastern part of the fertile crescent. A drone was used for topographical and geological survey of prehistoric sites and surrounding terrain in Slemani Province, Iraqi Kurdistan region. The team is currently drafting maps and drawings from this data.


Geological survey of the Zagros Mountains

Arsanjan region, Iran


Ken-ichiro Hisada is currently involved in a geological survey of the southern part of the Zagros Mountains. It is clear that the area is dotted with rock salt outcrops comprised of dome-like structures and that the zoning and intersection of the banded limestone and radiolarian rocks is extensive. The rock salt domes provide essential salt necessary for diet and the survival of humans; the limestone caves provided shelter for Paleolithic people and the radiolarian rocks provided high quality stone necessary in the production of lithic tools.


Paleoenvironmental survey of Mesopotamian floodplain sediments


Ryo Anma has undertaken a Paleoenvironmental survey of Mesopotamian flood plain sediments used in the production of cuneifrm tablets. Analysis of the structure and composition of specimen slides indicates the clay sediments are composed of loam, in which sand, silt and clay particles are frequently mixed, with marine foraminifera and circular algae shell of (Kokkolis), possibly comprising secondary sediment.


Conservation and restoration of murals in Üzümlü charch: 

Cappadocia, Turkey


Yoko Taniguchi facilitates the preservation and restoration of Üzümlü church in the Cappadocia region. The chronological age of the murals is thought to be the end of the seventh century. Various graffiti in Arabic and Turkish remain as well as graffiti in classical Greek from the 8th and 9th centuries. As there are also many historically important graffiti such as horse and saint statue engravings, conservation and restoration work is carried out so as not to erase important historical evidence.