Göbekli Tepe
© Brian Weed/ Abode Stock
Ancient Site of Göbekli Tepe in Southern Turkey.
People who migrated from Siberia formed the Göbeklitepe, and those in Göbeklitepe migrated in five other ways to spread to the world, said experts about the 12,000-year-old Neolithic archaeological site in the southwestern province of Şanlıurfa.

Semih Güneri, a retired professor from Caucasia and Central Asia Archaeology Research Center of Dokuz Eylül University, and his colleague, Professor Ekaterine Lipnina, presented the Siberia-Göbeklitepe hypothesis they have developed in recent years at the congress held in Istanbul between June 11 and 13.

There was a migration that started from Siberia 30,000 years ago and spread to all of Asia and then to Eastern and Northern Europe, Güneri said at the international congress.

"The relationship of Göbeklitepe high culture with the carriers of Siberian microblade stone tool technology is no longer a secret," he said while emphasizing that the most important branch of the migrations extended to the Near East.

"The results of the genetic analyzes of Iraq's Zagros region confirm the traces of the Siberian/North Asian indigenous people, who arrived at Zagros via the Central Asian mountainous corridor and met with the Göbeklitepe culture via Northern Iraq," he added.

"The upper paleolithic migrations between Siberia and the Near East is a process that has been confirmed by material culture documents," he said.

Emphasizing that the stone tool technology was transported approximately 7,000 kilometers from east to west, he said, "It is not clear whether this technology is transmitted directly to long distances by people speaking the Turkish language at the earliest, or it travels this long-distance through using way stations."

According to the archaeological documents, it is known that the Siberian people had reached the Zagros region, he said.

"There seems to be a relationship between Siberian hunter-gatherers and native Zagros hunter-gatherers," Güneri said, adding that the results of genetic studies show that Siberian people reached as far as the Zagros.

"There were three waves of migration of Turkish tribes from the Southern Siberia to Europe," said Osman Karatay, a professor from Ege University. He added that most of the groups in the third wave, which took place between 2600-2400 B.C., assimilated and entered the Germanic tribes and that there was a genetic kinship between their tribes and the Turks.

The professor also pointed out that there are indications that there is a technology and tool transfer from Siberia to the Göbeklitepe region and that it is not known whether people came, and if any, whether they were Turkish.

"Around 12,000 years ago, there would be no 'Turks' as we know it today. However, there may have been tribes that we could call our 'common ancestors,'" he added.

"Talking about 30,000 years ago, it is impossible to identify and classify nations in today's terms," said Murat Öztürk, associate professor from İnönü University. He also said that it is not possible to determine who came to where during the migrations that were accepted to have been made thousands of years ago from Siberia.

On the other hand, Mehmet Özdoğan, an academic from Istanbul University, has an idea of where "the people of Göbeklitepe migrated to."

According to Özdoğan, "the people of Göbeklitepe turned into farmers, and they could not stand the pressure of the overwhelming clergy and started to migrate to five ways."

"Migrations take place primarily in groups. One of the five routes extends to the Caucasus, another from Iran to Central Asia, the Mediterranean coast to Spain, Thrace and [the northwestern province of] Kırklareli to Europe and England, and one route is to Istanbul via [Istanbul's neighboring province of] Sakarya and stops," Özdoğan said.

In a very short time after the migration of farmers in Göbeklitepe, 300 settlements were established only around northern Greece, Bulgaria and Thrace.

"Those who remained in Göbeklitepe pulled the trigger of Mesopotamian civilization in the following periods, and those who migrated to Mesopotamia started irrigated agriculture before the Sumerians," he said.