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Calls for support as destroyed Mosul Museum seeks to rebuild

Not much is left of the Mosul Museum, Iraq's second most important museum, after Islamic State militants stole what they could carry and smashed and set the rest on fire.
A view of a destroyed museum, where Islamic State militants filmed themselves destroying priceless statues and sculptures in 2015, during a battle against the militants in Mosul, Iraq, March 11, 2017. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani - RTX30KNF
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When Iraqi soldiers entered the Mosul Museum on March 13, they were greeted by scenes of enormous damage caused by the Islamic State (IS). Some items had been destroyed or burned, while others had been stolen by IS militants and sold to antiquities traders.

Iraqis and the rest of the world celebrated when the museum was freed from IS' grip, but their joy was bittersweet. UNESCO spokesperson Irina Bokova praised the liberation of the museum on March 9 and described the Feb. 26, 2015, attack on it as a “cultural tragedy.” The Mosul Museum, established in 1952 and considered the second most important museum after the Iraqi Museum in Baghdad, is now charred rubble. The sculptures of winged bulls symbolizing the Assyrian Empire that guarded its gates were both destroyed.

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