UNESCO chief ‘deeply concerned’ about Palmyra, urges ceasefire

Islamic State militants launched an offensive on May 13 to capture the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra -- a 2,000-year-old world heritage site nicknamed "the pearl of the desert"The head of UNESCO said on Wednesday she was "deeply concerned" about fighting in Syria's ancient city of Palmyra and called for an "immediate" end to hostilities. Irina Bokova said in a statement that the fighting was "putting at risk one of the most significant sites in the Middle East," as Islamic State fighters overran the north of the city. Palmyra's UNESCO-listed heritage site, including ancient temples and colonnaded streets, and its adjacent museum housing priceless artefacts, are in the city's southwest.


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