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The Italian archaeologist Dr Luca Maria Olivieri awarded in Pakistan

His research team discovered that the Swat Valley was the cradle of Vajrayana Buddhism

The Italian archaeologist Dr Luca Maria Olivieri awarded in Pakistan

Claudia Astarita

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The Italian archaeologist Dr Luca Maria Olivieri has been awarded the prestigious Sitar-e-Imtiaz prize by the President of Pakistan, Mamnoon Hussein, as an acknowledgement of his work in the Swat Valley.

"I am and I will remain extremely proud of this award which represents the recognition not only of an individual activity but it also reflects the activity of the entire Italian Archaeological Mission that was established about sixty years ago in Swat", Dr Olivieri said when receiving the prize.

The Swat Valley has been inhabited for over two thousand years, and among the main results of Dr Olivieri's research, there are the proofs that it was the cradle of Vajrayana Buddhism and the restoration of Jahanabad Buddha. Dr Olivieri is the fourth Italian archaeologist from the mission to be awarded this prestigious honour by the Government of Pakistan.

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