Mahmoud Hamoud said the circular limestone cemeteries that were discovered Monday in the village of Heina, south of the capital Damascus, contained skeletons of both adults and children, more than 120 pieces of pottery, jars and precious stones.
Syria's official SANA news agency, quoting the antiquities directorate, said the cemeteries resemble sites in the ancient Palestinian West Bank town of Jericho and the southern Lebanese port city of Sidon.
Last month, Syrian media reported the discovery of a Roman-era cross-shaped limestone cemetery in the Nasiriya area in the remote Hasaka province, some 700 kilometers (440 miles) northeast of Damascus dating from the 3rd century A.D. The graveyard also contained coins, pottery shards and bracelets dating to the later Aramaic era.
Also last month, an older cemetery from the 2nd century A.D. was discovered in the famed ruins of Palmyra, one of the region's most impressive sites from Classical antiquity.
Syrian archaeologists also reported finding a rare limestone panel and a glass jar containing an infant's ashes in the ancient town of Palmyra.
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