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All eyes on King Tut's tomb in search for ancient Egypt's lost Queen Nefertiti

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By Euronews
All eyes on King Tut's tomb in search for ancient Egypt's lost Queen Nefertiti

Speculation is mounting that Tutankhamun’s tomb could lead the way to the last resting place of the lost Queen Nefertiti, in what would be the most remarkable Egyptian archaeological find this century.

Experts say scans of the site make it 90 percent likely that there is something behind the walls.

British Egyptologist Nicholas Reeves, leading the investigation, said last month that he believed Tutankhamun’s mausoleum was originally occupied by Nefertiti and that she had lain undisturbed behind what he believes is a partition wall.

“My close examination of these scans highlighted the apparent presence of closed doorways on the west wall, potentially leading to an additional Tutankamun period storeroom,” he told a news conference in Luxor on Saturday.

Egyptian Antiquities Minister Mamdouh al-Damaty added: “We said earlier there was a 60 percent chance there is something behind the walls. But now after the initial reading of the scans, we are saying now its 90 percent likely there is something behind the walls.”

He said he expected to reach the other side of the tomb’s wall within three months.

Reeves however warned that even the most minor of incisions in the wall could wreak damage to an inner chamber that may have been hermetically sealed for so many years.

“The key is to excavate slowly and carefully and record well. The fact is this isn’t a race. All archaeology is disruption. We can’t go back and re-do it, so we have to do it well in the first place,” Reeves said.

There is huge international interest in Nefertiti, who died in the 14th century B.C. and is thought to be Tutankhamun’s stepmother.

Her chiselled cheek-bones and regal beauty were immortalised in a 3,300-year old bust now in a Berlin museum.

King Tut, as he is affectionately known, died around 1323 B.C.

His tomb, complete with his famous golden burial mask, was found in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings in Luxor in 1922.

In the search for Nefertiti,new evidence from the radar imaging taken so far is to be sent to a team in Japan for analysis. The results are expected to be announced in a month.