The Gaya Tumuli, a group of seven burial mounds from Korea's ancient Gaya Confederacy, has been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
The World Heritage Committee decided on Sunday to add the burial mounds on the heritage list during its 45th session in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
The committee assessed that the Gaya Tumuli hold "outstanding universal value" as sites of important evidence of the diversity found among ancient East Asian civilizations.
The committee said “through their geographical distribution and landscape characteristics, types of burials, and grave goods, the cemeteries attest to the distinctive Gaya political system in which polities existed as autonomous political equals while sharing cultural commonalities.”
The Gaya Confederacy refers to some ten small kingdoms that prospered around the Nakdong River between the first and sixth centuries.
The tumuli, all state-designated cultural properties located in both Gyeongsang provinces and North Jeolla Province, are assessed to be key historic sites that offer a glimpse of Gaya's cultural establishment, development and identity.
With the latest inscription, South Korea now has 16 entries on the UNESCO World Heritage list.