A 5,000-year-old fragment of leather with drawings has been discovered in southeastern Iran’s Burnt City after archaeologists started a new excavation season at the site.

"Due to extensive corrosion, some experts and the archaeologists are trying to save the leather," said lead archaeologist Professor Seyyed Mansur Sajjadi to the Research Centre for Cultural Heritage and Tourism.

Also discovered were two metre-thick walls of a structure in the urban area of the Burnt City, supported by nine buttresses.

"The signs of fire are clearly seen in some rooms of the building," Sajjadi continued.

The city, the largest urban settlement in the eastern half of the Iranian Plateau, burned down three times and wasn’t rebuilt after the last fire 1800 BC.

Sajjadi also mentioned that plain and coloured textiles were found in a small room in another building, thought to have been used as a place for offering sacrifices.

The Burnt City, registered in June on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, is 57km from the town of Zabol in Sistan-Baluchestan Province.