Egypt discovers new necropolis in Minya, first in area

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Mummies lying in catacombs following their discovery in the Touna el-Gabal district of the Minya province.

"This is the first human necropolis found in central Egypt with so many mummies", Antiquities Minister Khaled el-Anany told a news conference at the site.

The funerary site also includes six sarcophagi, two clay coffins, two papyri written in demotic script as well as a number of vessels, according to the antiquities ministry.

The new discovery was unearthed in Touna el-Gabal district, which is a desert area in Minya province, 234 km far from Cairo.

The mummies were elaborately preserved therefore likely belong to officials and priest, the Egyptian Minister of Antiquities said.

But a spokeswoman said they could also date from the Ptolemaic Dynasty, founded by Alexander the Great's general Ptolemy.

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Archaeologists have discovered an underground catacomb containing numerous mummy-filled corridors at an ancient cemetery at the site of Tuna el-Gebel in Egypt.

Egyptian archaeologists have discovered an ancient burial site holding at least 17 mummies, a lot of them fully intact, which could date back two millennia.

Discoveries such as the mummies, are important to the Egyptian government. The lack of tourists devastated the Egyptian government, and they are hoping that this archaeological discovery, and the many that they hope will follow, will help usher the tourists back into Egypt.

The findings were the latest in a series of discoveries in recent months.

Back in April, eight mummies were discovered in a 3,500-year-old tomb belonging to a nobleman.

The tourism sector, a crucial source of hard currency, has struggled to regain ground amid a growing number of militant attacks, including two Islamic State church bombings last month.