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Arch of Triumph in Palmyra Blown Up by ISIS Militants

The Arch of Triumph in Palmyra, Syria now lies in ruins after the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) blew it up, an antiquities officer announced on Sunday.

The destruction of the Palmyra's Arch of Triumph drew condemnation from the United Nations cultural organization. The group called for trial and punishment for the terrorist group's "war crimes," according to Reuters.

On Sunday, Maamoun Abdulkarim, the antiquities chief of Syria, said ISIS militants blew up the ancient city's Arch of Triumph. The terrorist group had already destroyed the UNESCO World Heritage site's temples earlier after they defeated government forces and conquered Palmyra in May. ISIS considers the temples and other religious structures as a form of idolatry, USA Today reports.

"If the city remains in their hands the city is doomed. It is now wanton destruction," Reuters quotes Abdulkarim's statement in an interview. "Their acts of vengeance are no longer ideologically driven because they are now blowing up buildings with no religious meaning."

In September, ISIS militants reportedly destroyed Palmyra's tower tombs that go back as far as 100 A.D. In August, they executed archaeologist Khaled al-Asaad and killed groups of soldiers within the site itself, the report details.

UNESCO vowed to exert all kinds of effort to have the militants tried and punished for their destruction of the ancient structures, the report adds.

In a statement, the group said ISIS' latest move only shows that they are "terrified" of history because a deeper understanding of the events in the past will only prove that their acts of violence are unjustified. It would also reduce their acts to mere outlets for their deep-rooted "hatred and ignorance," the report relays.

Palmyra is a landmark cultural center among ancient sites, and UNESCO said it is a meeting point of several civilizations. Before ISIS captured the city, Syrian officials managed to secure hundreds of other ancient statues.

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