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More destruction at Palmyra as ISIS blows up Triumphal Arch

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ISIS militants have destroyed another structure within the ancient city of Palmyra - this time a 2,000-year-old Roman arch

According to Syria’s antiquities chief Maamoun Abdulkarim, who spoke to Reuters yesterday (4 October), the stone Cardo Maximus Triumphal Arch at the UNESCO world heritage site had been blown up by the terrorists.

The move comes just weeks after the self-proclaimed Islamic State also destroyed the Temple of Bel - the largest building at Palmyra - as well three 2,000-year-old Syrian tower tombs, built between 44 and 103 AD.

The militant group claims the buildings were sacrilegious.

Abdulkarim told Reuters: ‘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.’

‘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.’

Historian Tom Holland, who has written a number of books about classical civilisation, tweeted: ‘I woke up hoping the destruction of the Arch of Triumph at might not actually have happened. Seems it has.’

 

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