The Guardian
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UNESCO alerts ICC on destroyed Iraqi artefacts


UNESCO chief Irina Bokova called Friday on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to look into the destruction of priceless artefacts by jihadists in Iraq that has caused outrage globally.

A video released Thursday of Islamic State militants smashing ancient statues to pieces with sledgehammers in the main museum and an archeological site in Mosul drew shocked condemnation and sparked fears that more of the world’s oldest heritage would be destroyed.

“We are expecting some reaction from the International Criminal Court, it’s very important because it will mobilise a big part of the international community,” Bokova told reporters in Paris, where the UN cultural body is headquartered.

Bokova, who said she had sent a letter to the ICC’s prosecutor and has also demanded an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council, slammed the destruction as “cultural cleansing.”

It’s “the deliberate destruction of heritage that targets the identities of different communities living in Iraq.”


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