LIFESTYLE

Pre-Columbian Mummies Damaged By Major Earthquake In Chile, Officials Say

Fishing boats washed ashore by a small tsunami, sit in Caleta Riquelme, adjacent to the port, in the northern town of Iquique, Chile, after magnitude 8.2 earthqauke struck the northen coast of Chile, Wednesday, April 2, 2014. Authorities lifted tsunami warnings for Chiles long coastline early Wednesday. Six people were crushed to death or suffered fatal heart attacks, a remarkably low toll for such a powerful shift in the Earths crust. (AP Photo/Cristian Viveros) NO PUBLICAR EN CHILE

Fishing boats washed ashore by a small tsunami, sit in Caleta Riquelme, adjacent to the port, in the northern town of Iquique, Chile, after magnitude 8.2 earthqauke struck the northen coast of Chile, Wednesday, April 2, 2014. Authorities lifted tsunami warnings for Chiles long coastline early Wednesday. Six people were crushed to death or suffered fatal heart attacks, a remarkably low toll for such a powerful shift in the Earths crust. (AP Photo/Cristian Viveros) NO PUBLICAR EN CHILE

Chilean officials say some pre-Columbian mummies buried in the northern Atacama desert have been damaged by a magnitude-8.2 earthquake and hundreds of aftershocks that hit the country last week.

The cultural heritage unit within Chile's equivalent of the FBI said Tuesday that some mummies suffered "serious damage," but there was no immediate word on how many were affected. Police say the powerful quake caused landslides that threw some mummies out of their graves.

The unit traveled to the Atacama to report on the condition of the mummies.

The mummies date back to the Chinchorro period that lasted from 5,000 to 1,500 B.C. That makes them older than the famed 3,300-year-old mummy of ancient Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun.

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