Apamea (Afamia)


(cc Bernard Gagnon)*
Apamea in 2010

Founded in 301 B.C., Apamea was one of the most important cities of North Syria in the Seleucid era. During the beginning of the Roman era, Apamea counted some 117.000 inhabitants. Due to its strategic position at that time, it played both a prominent military and commercial role.

The Apamea site is considered one of the most affected sites as a result of ongoing illegal excavations, which are centred on the eastern, northeastern, and western regions of the city.

  • Armed gangs have systematically carried out illegal excavations, using bulldozers and occasionally using electronic machines to search for metals, targeting mosaics.
  • Pits of up to 20m deep have been reported throughout the site in the floor of the temples, churches, and baths.
  • Illegal excavations using heavy machinery have been reported outside the archaeological site.

* For more information on the use of the photo, click here