A group of ancient lines in the archaeological zone of Buenos Aires, in Nazca, have been destroyed by heavy machinery, El Comercio reported.
According to the daily, the machinery belongs to a firm that is removing limestone from the area.
The lines are located near kilometer marker 444 of the Panamericana Sur Highway. The area adjacent to the lines have reportedly also been affected, due to land being removed from the area.
Eduardo Herrán Gómez de la Torre, director of research at Ojos de Condor, described the extensive damage in the area. “We have witnessed the irreparable destruction to a set of lines and trapezoids that existed in the area,” Herrán said.
“The limestone firm responsible has not been sanctioned or supervised by the authorities of the Regional Directorate of Culture of Ica, despite being in this great archaeological reserve.”
“The company argues that the land where the plant is installed is private property and that the owner can do whatever he wants on his land, but this is not so,” he added.
Mario Olaechea Aguije, Nazca’s regional head of culture, said the limestone quarry was located within private property, and that the owner was free to work the land.
However, according to the daily, the private property is located within an area that was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, 18 years ago.
April 7 — Editor’s note: The most iconic portions of the Nazca Lines were not affected by the mine, and remain open to sight-seeing.
This story quotes from an article that appeared in the online version of El Comercio on March 14.