ISIS-looted antquities arriving in the West

NormBanks

NormBanks

2015-07-06 10:33:04

Collectors of antiquities from the Middle East are being warned to be vigilant for pieces looted by ISIS.

That's because looted pieces are now regularly turning up at antiquities dealers in the Western world – a direct consequence of the spread of ISIS and its ransacking of historical sites.

Plundering in the region has long been a problem, yet Syrian archaeologist Amr al-Azm believes ISIS has now made the process more efficient than before. 

He told the Guardian newspaper: “When Daesh (a derogatory Arabic name for ISIS) comes in, they take the looting and institutionalise it.

“So it becomes part of their admin, their revenue-raising enterprise – it becomes more intensified, escalated and organised.”  

Coins, glassware, and ceramics spanning the Greek, Roman, Byzantine and Islamic periods are among the pieces to look out for.   

Some reports in the media suggest the antiquities sales are second only to oil in revenue making for ISIS.

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