Site of Palmyra (inscribed in 1980)

Site of Palmyra © Silvan Rehfeld

An oasis in the Syrian Desert, north-east of Damascus, Palmyra contains the monumental ruins of a great city that was one of the most important cultural centres of the ancient world. From the 1st to the 2nd century, the art and architecture of Palmyra, standing at the crossroads of several civilizations, married Greco-Roman techniques with local traditions and Persian influences.

  • the Necropolis has been attacked by looters who broke into a tomb and stole 22 funeral busts and the headstone of a child (November 2014)
  • The palm groves near the Temple of Bel is reported to be a combat zone.
  • Holes from shells and bullets have been reported in the southern and eastern walls of the Temple.
  • Two columns in the southern portico of the Temple have collapsed.
  • Bullet and shelling traces have been reported on the southern, western, and northern walls of the Temple and on the column in the north-eastern corner of the Temple.
  • Traces of fire damage have been reported on the southern and eastern walls, on the lintel of the eastern portico, and the southern window.
  • Illegal excavations are occurring in the Valley of the Tombs, in the Camp of Diocletian, some undertaken by heavy machienry.
  • The Citadel is being used for military purposes and vehicle access all parts of the fragile archaeological site.
  • A new road has been built cutting across the archaeological area.

Pictures of the damage to the Necropolis (November 2014)


Pictures of the damage to the Temple of Bel (Oct 2013)


Pictures of damages to the Camp of Diocletian

Pictures of the damage to the Greek House

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