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Syria/destruction of the Holy Martyrs Armenian Church in Deir Ezzor

Published on October 2, 2014
Statement by M. Laurent Fabius, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development

Paris, October 1, 2014

I condemn the destruction of the Holy Martyrs Church in Deir Ezzor, a site that is highly symbolic for the Armenian community.

France welcomes the commitment of religious authorities of all faiths – despite attacks and threats – to their struggle to promote tolerance and respect for places of worship.

Syrian and Iraqi heritage, especially religious heritage, is at risk.
Violations of the obligation to protect cultural heritage constitute war crimes; those responsible for these violations should be held accountable before the International Criminal Court. France, together with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), is mobilized to ensure that the conventions on the protection of cultural heritage are implemented, notably in situations of armed conflict./.