Excavations in Koh Ker

2012 Dec 05

On 6 December, the Hungarian Indochina Company and the Hungarian Southeast Asian Research Institute signed a new contract, this time for the five-year period 2013-2017, with the Cambodian government agency APSARA responsible for the cultural heritage of Angkor and its surroundings as well as Koh Ker. In addition to the continuation of the excavations and epigraphic studies in the 10th century imperial capital, Koh Ker, the contract also includes some new elements: within a remote sensing (LiDAR) project to be conducted in cooperation with international organisations conducting archaeological research in Cambodia, it covers the processing of the data obtained about Koh Ker, its comparison with the information derived from site terrain surveys and its utilisation in the specific programme of excavations, as well as research into the history and art history of Koh Ker, which, in addition to the experts of the Institute itself, will also employ an international group of specialists (Khmer, French, Indian and Australian).

Plans concerning the Prasat Krachap temple complex include the removal of rubble, reinforcement of surviving structures and making them accessible to tourists, and the construction of a communal utilities building at Koh Ker. Conclusion of the contract was announced by Dr. István Zelnik, chairman of the Hungarian Indochina Company at an international conference in Siem Reap, held in honour of the 20th anniversary of the foundation of ICC-ANGKOR (International Coordinating Committee for the Safeguarding and Development of the Historic Site of Angkor). At the same conference, Azedine Beshauch, scientific secretary of ICC-Angkor presented the new scientific publication of the Hungarian Southeast Asian Research Institute, a new translation of one of the most important inscriptions of Khmer history by Hungarian researcher Tibor Novák, with an introductory essay by Prof. Claude Jacques, the foremost authority on Khmer history and epigraphy.