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Skeletal remains provide PNG clue

Danish archaeologists claim to have made a sensational skeletal discovery in Papua New Guinea (PNG).

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DAVID LONGSTREATH/AP
Foto: DAVID LONGSTREATH/AP

Danish archaeologists have found an ancient skeleton on M'buke Island in Papua New Guinea in what is being described as a sensational discovery.

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Danish archaeologists searching for pottery in M'buke in Papua New Guinea, claim to have made a sensational discovery that further refutes claims by the Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl that Polynesian culture can originally have come from South America.

A female skeleton found just outside their camp, under 2,000 year-old pottery shards seems to confirm that the Polynesian islands were populated as a result of migration from Asia.

"What we have here seems to be a sensational discovery: the oldest skeleton ever found in the entire region. The Pacific is one of the last 'white spots' on the archaeological map of the world, and mapping this enormous area can become one of the 21st century's greatest feats," says Archaeologist Jeanette Varberg.

M'buke
Last year, Varberg and colleagues from Aarhus University were on an expedition to the PNG island of M'buke in the southwestern Pacific to find pottery of the Lapita culture.

In their encampment, under deep levels of clay below levels of volcanic gravel, the archaeologists found the skeleton of a woman. Another skeleton was found but left in place as its burial place stretched under the bearing construction of their hut.

Edited by Julian Isherwood

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