In 1908, a team of French archeologists started to clear away the vegetation covering the outer surrounding wall and three levels of a pyramid. They also built a drainage system to protect provisional sand embankments. Underneath, they discovered a 71 meter long sleeping Buddha (the monument depicted Him laying on his side). In 1918 a series of collapses occurred including the fall of half the southeast angle turret on the second level. In 1943, half of the east part of the north half of the second and third level collapsed on the first level. Nine years later, all this work was washed away in torrential rains. Civil war brought all work came to a halt in 1970. The design plans and the plans for the thousands of dismantled bricks, which had been set down in an adjacent field, were destroyed and/or lost.