The European Association of Archaeologists has issued the following statement on the recent destruction of an archaeological site in Bulgaria:
The EAA has learnt with dismay of the destruction of the Late Neolithic pit sanctuary at Dana Bunar near Lyubimets, south-east Bulgaria, in advance of road-building. This was in breach of an agreed protocol with the Road Executive Agency of Bulgaria to modify the original road proposal to protect at least part of this important site.
In view of this failure of protocol, and recognising that many of the rich archaeological monuments of Bulgaria are currently under severe threat from both development and treasure-hunting, the EAA urges the Bulgarian government to make stronger efforts to adhere fully to the provisions of the Valletta Convention on the Protection of the Archaeological Heritage (ratified by Bulgaria as long ago as 1993 and in force since 1995).
By working within the requirements of the Convention, and rigorously monitoring its operation, the Bulgarian authorities will achieve stricter control over development projects, ensure that archaeological considerations are taken into account at all stages of the planning process, and provide sufficient funds for mitigation and rescue work to provide stronger protection for the archaeological heritage.