World Monuments Fund in Iraq

Ten thousand years ago, the foundations of human civilization were laid in the fertile floodplain between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in what was then Mesopotamia and is now the modern nation of Iraq. An estimated ten thousand sites within Iraq’s borders chronicle thousands of years of human history, including many of its greatest cultural achievements. Decades of political isolation, a protracted war with Iran, and more recently, the coalition invasion, which began in 2003, have put this heritage at risk.

Today, sites such as the Assyrian capital of Nineveh, the ziggurat at Ur, the temple precinct at Babylon, and a ninth-century spiral minaret at Samarra have been scarred by violence, while equally important ancient sites are being ravaged by looters. World Monuments Fund (WMF) has created the Iraq Cultural Heritage Conservation Initiative to address these threats to Iraq’s ancient treasures.

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