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Antiquities Coalition Appeal to the International Criminal Court

March 9, 2015

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On Friday, March 6, 2015 — after we learned of the alleged bulldozing of Nimrud by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) — the Antiquities Coalition wrote Fatou Bensouda, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), urging her to open an investigation into ISIS’ war crimes against cultural heritage in northern Iraq.
The attack of Nimrud — following others on the Mosul Library, Mosul Museum, and Assyrian ruins of Nineveh — is a grave violation of domestic Iraqi and international law, including the Rome Statute, which established the ICC.  More importantly, judging from history, it also poses a stark warning that ISIS will soon undertake even greater violence against the besieged Iraqi population: The United Nations (UN) clearly recognizes that such “cultural cleansing” is a specific risk factor of impending genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes.

Read our full letter to Madame Bensouda here.

UPDATE: Read the response from the ICC’s Madame Bensouda here.