'ISIS militants blow up ancient Arch of Triumph in Palmyra'

Syria's antiquities chief says jewel in the exquisite collection of ruins in the oasis city, had been blown up.

By REUTERS
October 5, 2015 01:56
1 minute read.
Arch of Triumph, Palmyra, Syria

Arch of Triumph, Palmyra, Syria . (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Islamic State militants have blown up the Arch of Triumph, a major monument in the 2,000-year-old Roman city of Palmyra, Syria's antiquities chief said on Sunday, after they destroyed two ancient temples at the central Syrian site in recent months.

Maamoun Abdulkarim told Reuters that sources in Palmyra had confirmed that the Arch of Triumph, a jewel in the exquisite collection of ruins in the oasis city, had been blown up.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Islamic State militants have blown up temples at the Roman-era UNESCO World Heritage site, which it has controlled since capturing Palmyra from Syrian government forces in May and mined other monuments and historic buildings. The group considers the buildings sacrilegious.

"It's as though there is a curse that has befallen this city and I expect only news that will shock us. If the city remains in their hands the city is doomed," Abdulkarim told Reuters.

"It is now wanton destruction ... their acts of vengeance are no longer ideologically driven because they are now blowing up buildings with no religious meaning," he added.

In August, the Sunni Muslim militants blew up the temple of Baal Shamin, then the Temple of Bel, one of the best preserved Roman-era sites.

Earlier this month it was also confirmed the militants had destroyed some of the best preserved of Palmyra's funeral towers, sandstone constructions built to hold the remains of the ancient city's richest families.



Palmyra was one of the most important cultural centers of the ancient world, according to cultural agency UNESCO, which has described it as the crossroads of several civilizations.

Islamic State has declared a caliphate in territory it holds across Syria and Iraq and has destroyed other monuments it says are pagan and sacrilegious.

UNESCO has called such acts war crimes and says Islamic State seeks to wipe out evidence of Syria's diverse heritage.

Before the capture of the city, Syrian officials said they had moved hundreds of ancient statues to safe locations.

Related Content

A general view shows the town of Khorog, Tajikistan
August 16, 2018
Young couple trying to prove human kindness among cyclists killed by ISIS

By JULIANE HELMHOLD