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Islamist fighters destroy two tombs.

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Islamist fighters destroy two tombs.

Post  Panda on Wed 11 Jul - 7:27

10 July 2012 Last updated at 14:56 Share this pageEmail Print Share this page

Islamist fighters in Timbuktu have destroyed two tombs at the northern Malian city's famous Djingareyber mosque, residents have said.

Eyewitnesses said the militants shot in the air to warn people away as they began smashing the shrines.

Timbuktu is a World Heritage site, with centuries-old shrines to Islamic saints, revered by Sufi Muslims.

The al-Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine group that seized the city in April says they are idolatrous and wants them removed.

The UN Security Council condemned the destruction last week of some shrines, warning it could constitute a war crime.

This means that a case could be referred to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, whose prosecutor has already condemned the recent destruction of Muslim tombs.

'Roads blocked'

About a dozen militants drove up to the 14th-Century Djingareyber mosque in an armoured four-wheeled truck, armed with guns, pickaxes and hoes, one Timbuktu resident who witnessed the scene told Reuters news agency.

Other residents described how the fighters blocked the two main roads leading to the mosque and shot in the air to scare people off.

Continue reading the main story
Treasures of Timbuktu

Timbuktu was a centre of Islamic learning from the 13th to the 17th centuries
700,000 manuscripts survive in public libraries and private collections
Books on religion, law, literature and science
Letters between rulers, officials and merchants on issues such as taxes, trade, marriage and prostitution
Added to Unesco world heritage list in 1988 for its three mosques and 16 cemeteries and mausoleums
They played a major role in spreading Islam in West Africa; the oldest dates from 1329
Why do we know Timbuktu?

"The two tombs are adjacent to the western wall of the great mosque and the Islamists have hoes [and] chisels - they are hitting the mausoleums which are made out of packed earth," another witness told the AFP news agency.

The UN cultural agency Unesco and Mali's government have already called on Ansar Dine to halt its campaign.

The group has destroyed several of 16 listed mausoleums in the city, and has vowed to smash them all.

Its fighters have also broken down the sacred door of the 15th-Century Sidi Yahia mosque.

Unesco has also expressed concern that valuable artefacts and manuscripts may be smuggled out of the region and has urged neighbouring countries to prevent this.

Timbuktu owes its international fame to its role as a centre of Islamic learning, based in its three large mosques, in the 15th and 16th Centuries. It is also known as the "city of 333 saints", which originate in the Sufi tradition of Islam.

Ansar Dine's Salafist beliefs condemn the veneration of saints.

The group seized control of Timbuktu in April, after a coup left Mali's army in disarray.

Initially, it was working with secular ethnic Tuareg rebels demanding independence for northern Mali's desert territories but the groups have recently clashed and Islamist forces are in control of northern Mali's three main centres - Timbuktu, Gao and Kidal.


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This is wierd, my Mother used to say "I wouldn't go from here to Timbuktu "although I'm sure she never knew where Timbuktu was. This is the first time in my life that I have heard mention of Timbuktu and more evidence of the religious war going on in the Middle East, causing mindless destruction.


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Re: Islamist fighters destroy two tombs.

Post  Badboy on Wed 11 Jul - 9:05

THEY ARE DESTROYING THINGS THAT COULD ATTRACT TOURIST AND MONEY IN TO THE REGION
SUFI SHRINE HAS ALSO BEEN DESTROYED IN EASTERN LIBYA.

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Re: Islamist fighters destroy two tombs.

Post  Panda on Wed 11 Jul - 9:14

Badboy wrote:THEY ARE DESTROYING THINGS THAT COULD ATTRACT TOURIST AND MONEY IN TO THE REGION
SUFI SHRINE HAS ALSO BEEN DESTROYED IN EASTERN LIBYA.


Morning Badboy, trouble is again surfacing in Iraq so the untold death toll of Civilian Deaths, collapse of the infrastructure , not to mention the Deaths
of British and American Soldiers was all in vain.

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Re: Islamist fighters destroy two tombs.

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