UNESCO demands emergency Security Council session over Iraq artifacts
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has called for an emergency meeting of the Security Council in the wake of the mass destruction of rare ancient artifacts by ISIL Takfiri terrorists in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul.
“This attack is far more than a cultural tragedy – this is also a security issue as it fuels sectarianism, violent extremism and conflict in Iraq. This stands in direct violation to the most recent United Nations Security Council Resolution 2199 that condemns the destruction of cultural heritage and adopts legally-binding measures to counter illicit trafficking of antiquities and cultural objects from Iraq and Syria,” UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova stated on Thursday.
“This is why I have immediately seized the president of the Security Council to ask him to convene an emergency meeting of the Security Council on the protection of Iraq’s cultural heritage as an integral element for the country’s security,” she added.
“The systematic destruction of iconic components of Iraq’s rich and diverse heritage that we have been witnessing over the past months is intolerable and it must stop immediately,” Bokova said.
Earlier on Thursday, ISIL posted a video online showing the terrorist members of the group destroying ancient artifacts at a museum in Mosul, located some 400 kilometers (248 miles) north of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad.
The video shows the Takfiri terrorists barbarically pounding 3,000-year-old sculptures with hammers. Tens of militants are seen in the footage using pickaxes, ladders, drills and hammers to destroy every single piece of artifact in the museum.
A precious Assyrian sculpture, dating back to the 7th century BC, is also shattered by the militants in the video.
After destroying the sculpture, a militant appears before the camera and describes the statues as signs of irreverence to God.
“These ruins that are behind me, they are idols and statues that people in the past used to worship instead of Allah,” the militant said.
The Takfiri terrorist group started its campaign of terror in Iraq in early June 2014. The heavily-armed militants took control of the city of Mosul before sweeping through parts of the country’s Sunni Arab heartland.
Iraqi soldiers, police units, Kurdish forces, Shia volunteers and Sunni tribesmen have recently succeeded in driving the terrorists out of some areas in Iraq.