France condemns destruction of ancient monuments in Syria

Syria – Destruction of the Tetrapylon in Palmyra – Statement by M. Jean-Marc Ayrault, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development

Paris, 20 January 2017

I was appalled to hear about the destruction by Daesh [so-called ISIL] of part of the Tetrapylon and other emblematic monuments at the Palmyra site, a jewel of ancient civilizations on UNESCO’s world heritage list. I strongly condemn these barbaric acts.

This destruction once again proves the terrorist group’s determination to deny history and the centuries-old cultural diversity of the Middle East.

France – which, together with the United Arab Emirates, took the initiative of organizing the international conference on endangered cultural heritage in conflict areas, in Abu Dhabi on 2 and 3 December 2016 – is fully committed to combating the destruction and looting of archaeological treasures.

France remains more mobilized than ever in the fight against terrorism, alongside its partners in the international coalition against Daesh. It calls on the whole international community to concentrate its efforts against that terrorist group, particularly in Syria and Iraq./.

Published on 31/01/2017

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