|UNESCO denounces Aleppo market destruction||
UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova has denounced the destruction of an ancient market in Syria’s northwestern city of Aleppo, describing it as a blow to world heritage.
Bokova issued a statement on Sunday, saying the damage caused to Syria's cultural heritage made the conflict in the Arab country even more painful, DPA reported.
“The Aleppo souks [open-air marketplaces] have been a thriving part of Syria’s economic and social life since the city’s beginnings. They stand as testimony to Aleppo’s importance as a cultural crossroads since the second millennium B.C.,” she noted.
On Saturday, a massive fire destroyed hundreds of shops in a medieval marketplace in the Old City of Aleppo, which has been declared a world heritage site by UNESCO.
The fire reportedly started late Friday amid heavy fighting between insurgents and Syrian Army troops.
Bokova pointed out that Syria is a signatory to the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict and is bound to do its utmost to safeguard this heritage from the ravages of war.
“I appeal to all forces to do their utmost to spare these monuments to human history that have contributed so much to Syria’s growth and prosperity - and which will undoubtedly prove vital to the country’s reconstruction,” she added.
The Old City of Aleppo was placed on UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1986 in recognition of its "rare and authentic Arab architectural styles."
Some of the country’s most significant sites, including centuries-old fortresses, have also fallen victim to the months-long unrest in Syria.
Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011.
Damascus says outlaws, saboteurs, and armed terrorists are the driving factor behind the unrest and deadly violence while the opposition accuses the security forces of being behind the killings.
The Syrian government says that the chaos is being orchestrated from outside the country and accuses Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey of arming the opposition.
The United States recently announced that it would allocate an additional $45 million to the insurgents fighting against the Syrian government.
The U.S. has already provided some $25 million to the armed groups, calling it non-lethal assistance to help them purchase communications devices.
(Source: Press TV)
Subscribe to our RSS feed to stay in touch and receive all of TT updates right in your feed reader