© Mission Archéologique du Peramagron

Since 2012, International Éveha is associated with Kunara's mission in Iraqi Kurdistan. Originally directed by Christine Kepinski (CNRS, UMR 7041), this project is now under responsible of Aline Tenu (CNRS, UMR 7041).

The excavation campaigns
(by years)


Christine Kepinski (Director of Research CNRS, HDR University of Paris I, UMR 7041)

Aline Tenu (since 2015)

Location and historical summary

The site of Kunara is situated in the eastern part of Iraqi Kurdistan, in the foothills of the Zagros mountains. More specifically, it is located on the Sulaymaniyah plain, bordered by the Azmar Range to the north-east and by Baranan Mountain to the south-west. Human occupation at this site is characterised by two tells (the Upper and Lower Towns) adjoining the Tanjaro river.

Based on the material collected during fieldwalking and during the first excavations, the site appears to have been occupied from the Neolithic period to the Bronze Age. No evidence for later occupations has yet been identified.

Written sources mention, at different times, the presence of peoples such as the Turukkaeans, the Lullubi and the Gutins in this region. The organisation of these settlements is better known under the reign of the Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II. Records of his military campaigns mention nineteen fortified towns within an area referred to as “Zamua”, which later became an Assyrian province and which corresponds to the study region.

Research history

This site was chosen as a result of a preliminary survey carried out in 2011 on a stretch of the valley. The archaeology of this region had previously seen very little study. However, the current results reveal a high density of sites located on the plain, with dates stretching from the 7th millennium BC (Hassuna period) to the Islamic period. As part of research into the early periods, the site of Kunara is a primary source of information, due to its long sequence of occupation from the at least the 4th millennium.

How Eveha International Participates

Topography, archaeological investigations


Sulaymaniyah Antiquities Directorate

French Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Maison René Ginouvès, Archéologie et Ethnologie, UMR 7041, Arscan, Archéologies et Sciences de l’Antiquité

Natural History Museum, UMR 7209, SAPA (Sociétés, Animaux et Plantes en Asie)

Maison de l’Orient Méditerranéen, UMR 5133, Archorient