Islamic State extremists have blown up the famous Arch of Triumph in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra, said an activist and monitoring group, as the jihadists press their campaign to tear down the treasured heritage site.
Islamic State militants have padded up temples with the Roman-era UNESCO World Heritage web-site, that it has governed ever since getting Palmyra from Syrian federal powers in May and real other architecture and all time historial structures.
The group believes any shrines or statues implying the existence of another deity are sacrilege and idolatry, and should be destroyed. “If town continues to be in their personal skills the town is condemned”, Abdulkarim instructed Reuters.
The militants beheaded the 82-year-old guardian of Palmyra’s ancient ruins in August.
In recent weeks, IS militants blew up two famed temples in Palmyra.
“We expect that the entire city of Palmyra will be destroyed”.
It was also confirmed the militants had destroyed a few of the best preserved of Palmyra’s funeral towers, sandstone constructions built to hold the remains of the ancient city’s richest families.
Syrian antiquities chief Maamoun Abdulkarim also confirmed the news, and told Reuters news agency that if IS remains in control of Palmyra, “the city is doomed”.
“Their acts of vengeance are no longer ideologically driven because they are now blowing up buildings with no religious meaning”, he added.
The group seized the city, a UNESCO World Heritage site, in May.
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.
Syria’s archaeology association, the APSA, says that more than 900 monuments and archeological sites have been looted, damaged or destroyed during the four-year civil war.