The tomb of a 15th-century Turkic tribal leader was moved Friday to save it from flooding when a new dam opens in southeast Turkey.
The mausoleum of Zeynel Bey, the son of Uzun Hassan, leader of the White Sheep confederation of Uzbek Turkmen, had been threatened by the waters of the Ilisu dam project.
The reservoir created by the dam will swamp parts of the town of Hasankeyf, where the tomb had rested since the 1470s.
To protect the circular brick mausoleum, which is glazed with navy blue and turquoise tiles, officials have moved it from its site across the River Tigris from Hasankeyf to a cultural park 2 kilometers (1 mile) away.
Yalcin Kurt, from the heritage directorate, oversaw the four-hour removal of the tomb on eight huge transporters. He said it was the first time such a large artefact had been relocated in Turkey.
Zeynel Bey is thought to have been killed in the battle of Otlukbeli in 1473, when the White Sheep, known as the Ak Koyunlu in Turkish, were routed by an Ottoman force.
He was later interred in the tomb, which was designed by architect Pir Hasan and is one of the earliest examples of mausoleum in Anatolia.
The White Sheep tribes ruled large swathes of land covering much of present day Turkey, Iraq, Iran, Azerbaijan and Armenia between the late 14th and early 16th centuries.
Hasankeyf, 32 kilometers (20 miles) southeast of provincial capital Batman, was declared a conservation area in 1981 but the hydroelectric dam has threatened the ancient settlement.
There are nearly 6,000 caves around the town that contain the remnants of Christian and Muslim worship, as well a Byzantine fortress.