A cement factory linked to the Myanmar government is said to be endangering an ancient Buddhist site by blasting the nearby mountains for material without regard for the relics housed in the cave.
Cement Factory Accused of Destroying Antiquities
The Irrawaddy, 25 February 2008
Mining work by a Burmese government-owned cement factory is destroying ancient Buddha images and votive tablets in a cave near Hpa-an, capital of Karen State, according to historians and local residents.
The Kawgun caveâ€”a natural lime stone cavern, 200ft high and 300ft longâ€”is located near a village of the same name, two miles from Hpa-an. It contains many images and artifacts that historians say date from the Pyu era, spanning the period from the first century to the ninth century AD.
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Find out more about the spread of Buddhism to Burma in:
– The Buddhist World of Southeast Asia (Suny Series in Religion) by D. K. Swearer
– The Ancient Pyu of Burma
– Caves of Northern Thailand by P. Sidisunthorn, S. Gardner and D. Smart
– Spreading the Dhamma: Writing, Orality, And Textual Transmission in Buddhist Northern Thailand (Southeast Asia–Politics, Meaning, Memory) by D. M. Veidlinger
– Reading Buddhist Art by M. McArthur
– Ancient Buddhist Art from Burma
– Early Civilizations of Southeast Asia by D. J. W. O’Reilly