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2,000-year-old ruins in Syria`s ancient city destroyed by ISIS

2,000-year-old ruins in Syria`s ancient city destroyed by ISIS

Posted September. 01, 2015 06:52,   


The Sunni Muslim Islamic State (ISIS) militant has blown up yet another prominent ancient temple of Palmyra in Syria.

“ISIS blows up Temple of Bel which ranks among the most important buildings in the ancient world,” Palmyra Coordination, an activist group for protecting cultural assets, tweeted on Saturday. A resident from Palmyra said to AP that “IS has completely destroyed the temple with strong explosives. Bricks and stone columns have collapsed to the ground.” Another witness described that only part of temple’s walls remained.

Built in around A.D. 32 by Semite, the temple that was consecrated to the Semitic god Bel had maintained relatively good condition compared to other Palmyra remains. Balanced between the style of Greco-Raman period and the construction of ancient Middle East, the temple was a large-scale construction of 200-meter tall ancient stone ruin with stone pillars, a court, a basin, an altar and a dining hall.

Merely a week ago on Aug. 23, the IS revealed on the Internet the photos of Baal Shamin temple built in A.D. 17, which was severely damaged by multiple explosives that the group had planted in the temple. Since the militant group occupied Palmira in May, it has destroyed ancient remains for the reason of idol worship. “Such acts are war crimes and their perpetrators must be accountable for their actions," UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova said in a statement.