Archaeologists have found a massive 3,000-year-old statue buried under a slum in Cairo, Egypt, which they believe depicts the ancient Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses II.
The Egyptian Antiquities Ministry announced on Thursday the discovery of parts from two statues of two kings belonging to the 19th Dynasty.
In a statement from the Ministry of Antiquities, Dr Aymen Ashmawy, head of the Egyptian archeology team describes the discovery as "very important" as it confirms the enormous size of Pharaoh Ramses II's sun temple and therefore the scale of his power.
In addition to the 8m-high statue, the statue of King 80cm limestone Seti II, who reigned around 1200 BC and is the pharaoh Ramses II's grandson.
Matareya, in the northern Cairo, is one of the Egyptian capital's most densely populated neighbourhoods.
With the large parts of the statues now out of the water, experts will attempt to extract the remaining pieces in order to restore them. After excavations wrap up, the fragments will be transported to the Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza, which is scheduled to open in 2018. In that time, he greatly expanded the reach of the Egyptian empire, to as far east as modern-day Syria and as far south as current-day Sudan, according to National Geographic. That's what I always tell the people here when they say is there anything important. "Statues, temples, obelisks, everything", he said. "It is the birthplace of the Sun God and indeed of Egypt and its civilization in terms of Egyptian mythology".
It was one of the largest temples in Egypt, nearly double the size of Luxor's Karnak, but was destroyed in Greco-Roman times.
Hawass told Ahram Online that he called the German excavation mission head, Dietrich Raue, who sent him a complete report on the excavations with photographs revealing the lifting process. "We took some precautions, although somewhat primitive, but the part that we retrieved was not harmed", said Khaled Mohamed Abuelela, manager of antiquities at Ain Shams University.