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Islamic State blows up Palmyra funerary towers

Jihadist militants from Islamic State (IS) have blown up three funerary towers at the ancient city of Palmyra, Syria’s antiquities chief has said, the BBC reports.

Maamoun Abdul Karim told the AFP news agency that “the best preserved and most beautiful” had been destroyed.

The multi-storey sandstone monuments, standing outside the city walls in an area known as the Valley of the Tombs, belonged to rich Palmyrene families.

Their demolition comes only days after IS blew up Palmyra’s two main temples.

The group, which captured the Unesco World Heritage site from government forces in May, has previously destroyed two Islamic shrines near Palmyra, which they described as “manifestations of polytheism”.

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