Photo released by the Apsara Authority on its Facebook page on July 30, 2017 shows archeologists cleaning a large, centuries-old statue in Siem Reap province, Cambodia. Archeologists have unearthed a large ancient statue during their excavations at an ancient hospital in the Angkor archeological park's complex in northwest Cambodia's Siem Reap province, an official said on Tuesday. (Xinhua)
PHNOM PENH, Aug. 1 (Xinhua) -- Archeologists have unearthed a large ancient statue during their excavations at an ancient hospital in the Angkor archeological park's complex in northwest Cambodia's Siem Reap province, an official said on Tuesday.
Long Kosal, deputy director of the communications department of the Apsara Authority, which manages the park, said the 1.9-meter tall, 58-centimeter wide statue was found on Saturday by a group of researchers from the Apsara Authority and Singapore's Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.
"The statue is thought to be from the late 12th or early 13th century," he told Xinhua, adding that the joint research group discovered the statue by accident while excavating an Angkor-era hospital built during the reign of King Jayavarman VII.
The statue, which is arms and legs broken off, is believed to be a guardian of the ancient hospital's entrance, he said, adding that the statue buried about 40 centimeters under the ground.
The 401-square-kilometer Angkor archeological park, inscribed on the UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1992, is the kingdom's most popular tourist destination.
The park attracted 1.23 million foreign tourists during the first six months of 2017, earning gross revenue of 52 million U.S. dollars, according to government figures.