MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The destruction of Syrian Palmyra’s Tetrapylon and Roman Theater’s proscenium by the terrorists of Daesh is an act a war crime, UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova said on Thursday.
"This destruction is a new war crime and an immense loss for the Syrian people and for humanity," Bokova said, as quoted in the UNESCO press statement.
Bokova called the destruction a "blow against cultural heritage" and underlined that it showed intentions of Daesh, outlawed in Russia and other countries, to "deprive the Syrian people of its past and its future".
Earlier in the day, reports emerged that Daesh militants destroyed the world-known tetrapylon and parts of the Roman theater in the ancient city of Palmyra. Palmyra used to be the capital of the Palmyrene Empire and one of the richest cities of the Roman Empire. Its monuments are included in the UNESCO World Heritage list.
In December, Daesh recaptured Palmyra. According to various sources, the number of terrorists that took part in the storming of the city reached 5,000 including hundreds of suicide bombers and dozens of armored vehicles.