U.S. Pledges $320K to Balochistan’s Mehrgarh Museum 

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Karachi, January 23:  U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome and Chief Minister of Balochistan Ali Mardan Khan Domki launched the Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) first-ever project in Balochistan.  This landmark initiative allocates over $320,000 for the preservation of Neolithic and other archaeological artifacts of the Mehrgarh civilization, as well as the enhancement of curation at the Mehrgarh Museum of Balochistan in Quetta.  In his remarks, Ambassador Blome said “This endeavor underscores the importance the United States places on the cultural legacy of Balochistan and our commitment to fostering a deeper appreciation of its history.”

The United States has awarded more than $8 million for 33 cultural heritage projects across Pakistan, including in Sindh province the restoration of Varun Dev Temple, Frere Hall, the Nusserwanjee Building, and the tombs of Sultan Ibrahim and Amir Sultan Muhammad at the UNESCO World Heritage Site Makli Hill necropolis.

The launch, attended by U.S. Consul General Karachi Conrad Tribble, officials from the Government of Balochistan Culture Department, and Sindh Exploration and Adventure Society (SEAS) co-founders Dr. Kaleemullah Lashari and Dr. Asma Ibrahim, included an overview of Mehrgarh history and the Mehrgarh Museum of Balochistan.

The Mehrgarh Museum of Balochistan, established in September 2022, showcases the region’s pre- and early history.  Artifacts from Mehrgarh are globally recognized and displayed in museums including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Musée Guimet in Paris, highlighting Pakistan’s global archaeological significance.

The funding from this U.S. grant will enhance the museum’s existing displays, strengthen community outreach skills, and provide professional development trainings for the Balochistan Directorate of Archaeology’s staff.  This AFCP project, which is implemented in partnership with the Government of Balochistan Culture Department and SEAS, will support efforts to preserve the cultural landscape of the region.


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