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Mystery: 'Beach' appears in the middle of Tunisian desert

New Delhi: A mysterious lake, which has appeared in drought-stricken Tunisia, is making headlines world over.Located right in the middle of the desert, this mystifying sight, which was discovered three weeks ago, locals were astounded
India TV News Desk August 03, 2014 9:29 IST
India TV News Desk
New Delhi: A mysterious lake, which has appeared in drought-stricken Tunisia, is making headlines world over.

Located right in the middle of the desert, this mystifying sight, which was discovered three weeks ago, locals were astounded when a lake appeared recently in a drought-stricken area. They've since named the miraculous sight "Gafsa Beach" for its location within a region of the same name in southern Tunisia.

Tunisians have welcomed the new 'beach' with joy.

After the lake was discovered earlier this month, Gafsa's public safety office warned visitors to avoid swimming in the waters, since officials had yet to confirm the safety of the mysterious body of water. Some speculated that the water could be harmful to humans or, possibly, carcinogenic since there is phosphate mining in the region.

However, that has not stopped locals from enjoying their newfound beach. For locals, roasting in the 40C heat, the temptation to cool off in the inviting water quickly overcame any fears about the mysterious pool.

A local daily reports that according to civil defense officials, it would range between 10 and 18 meters. Swimmers have been warned about the dangerous nature of its water, but they haven't refrained from entering it.

Shepherds discovered the lake, thought to be up to 18 meters deep and covering one hectare, three weeks ago. Local geologists suspect seismic activity may have ruptured the rock above the water table sending the liquid to the surface.

Other theories have suggested the canyon has simply collected rain water.

"News of the lake's appearance has spread like wildfire and now hundreds of people, eager to escape a heatwave, go there to swim," Souid wrote in the Tunisia Daily newspaper.

Gafsa became the centre of the country's mining industry after phosphate was discovered in the southern Tunisian region in 1886. Tunisia is now the world's fifth largest exporter of phosphate, which is used in industry.