My photo

Anshul is a Political Science and Law graduate from the University of Delhi. He is interested in political, legal and policy developments and frequently writes on related themes. You can contact him on anshulkumarpandey [at] gmail [dot] com.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Academic Paper: Mutilating the Past - The Islamic State and the Last Song of History

5th ILNU Conference on International Humanitarian and Refugee Law
Venue: Ahmedabad, Gujarat
Theme: Targeting of Cultural Property
Topic: Mutilating the Past - The Islamic State and the Last Song of History


The deliberate destruction of cultural property in Iraq, Syria and Libya by the Islamic State (ISIL) has provoked widespread condemnation from all quarters with the Director-General of UNESCO calling such a campaign “a form of cultural cleansing”. Academic experts, war veterans and professional archaeologists, all agree that the religious motivation from the fundamentalist Salafi ideology is merely a camouflage for this antiquarian carnage, the real purpose of which is to secure economic resources for the terrorist organization by the looting and black marketing of historical artifacts. According to Newsweek, sale of ancient relics now represent the organization’s second largest source of funding, running into hundreds of millions of dollars.

In this paper, the authors analyze the destruction of cultural properties carried out by the ISIL in the past and associated violation of the provisions of the Hague Convention, the international ramifications of such actions and their aftermath and also the dangers faced by the remaining UNESCO World Heritage Sites in these countries from the ongoing armed conflict.

Candids from the Conference


Full text of the paper is available at Academia and Social Science Research Network (SSRN)

Link to Academia Profile:
Link to SSRN Profile: