Russian archaeologists have discovered ancient cave paintings dating back to 3000 BC in a gorge in southern Russia, they said.
"A few days ago we found five drawings, fairly large fragments, on the territory of the Khasaut gorge," archaeologist Andrei Belinsky was quoted as saying Tuesday by the Interfax news agency.
"This is a great discovery because no one has ever seen them before," said Belinsky, who heads the Stavropolsky region's Heritage cultural museum.
Belinsky added that the paintings, which were discovered near the Caucasian town of Kislovodsk, were made using ochre paint and had been dated back to the Third Bronze Age.
One of the paintings discovered in the gorge features a hunting scene as well as figures that appear to be from another world — leading scholars to conclude the paintings may have been used in ancient rituals, Interfax reported.
Ochre, which comprises natural earth pigments, is revered for its long-lasting qualities and many cave paintings discovered around the world were made using the mineral-based paint.