As of late last month (June 2013) six sites in Syria have been put on the “UNESCO’s world heritage endangered list”. The ongoing conflict and civil war in Syria has continued to take innocent lives as well as created major risks to Syria’s cultural heritage resulting on significant destruction and damage to many sites and cities.
The six new endangered sites include the Ancient City of Damascus; Site of Palmyra; Ancient City of Bosra; Ancient City of Aleppo; Crac des Chevaliers and Qal’at Salah El-Din; and Ancient Villages of northern Syria.
Since the fighting began in 2011, many sites have been destroyed. In fact, WCHV and other online sites reported on the minaret of one of the Syria’s most famous mosques, the Great Mosque at the heart of the ancient city of Aleppo, which was completely destroyed. In addition, the city’s souk, which was considered to be the world’s most extensive covered market, suffered major damage during the fighting.
In a news release by the UNESCO in June 2013, the officials stated: “The danger listing is intended to mobilize all possible support for the safeguarding of these properties, which are recognized by the international community as being of outstanding universal value for humanity as a whole”. This decision was made as part of the Committee’s work in reviewing of the state of conservation of World Heritage sites already inscribed on the World Heritage List.