The Red Sea forks northwards into the Suez Graben and the Dead Sea-Arava Rift (Fig. 1). The southern part of the latter, about 165 km long, is occupied by the Gulf of Aqaba (Elat). A sinistral strike-slip movement of about 107 km which was suggested to have occurred along the Dead Sea-Arava Rift1-3 is related to the opening of the Red Sea proper1,4-6. The opening of the Red Sea was considered to have taken place in two stages. The various dates proposed for the first movement are: from 41 to 34 Myr (ref. 5), from 29 to 24 Myr (ref. 7) and from 20 Myr onwards6. The second movement is generally dated from 4-5 Myr to Recent. Garfunkel and Bartov8 claimed that the rifting in the Gulf of Suez was well under way in the span of the late Oligocene to early Miocene (30-20 Myr) and that a drastic change in the tectonic regime occurred in the middle Miocene (15-16 Myr). We suggest here, however, that the opening of the Red Sea is younger than 19-22 Myr.
|Number of pages||3|
|State||Published - 1 Dec 1980|
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