Islamic State militants bulldoze ancient Nimrud city

NNA – Islamic State fighters have looted and bulldozed the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud, the Iraqi government said, in their latest assault on some of the world’s greatest archaeological and cultural treasures.A tribal source from the nearby city of Mosul told Reuters the ultra-radical Sunni Islamists, who dismiss Iraq’s pre-Islamic heritage as idolatrous, had pillaged the 3,000-year-old site on the banks of the Tigris river.The assault against Nimrud came just a week after the release of a video showing Islamic State forces smashing museum statues and carvings in Mosul, the city they seized along with much of northern Iraq last June.”Daesh terrorist gangs continue to defy the will of the world and the feelings of humanity,” Iraq’s tourism and antiquities ministry said, referring to Islamic State by its Arabic acronym.”In a new crime in their series of reckless offences they assaulted the ancient city of Nimrud and bulldozed it with heavy machinery, appropriating the archaeological attractions dating back 13 centuries BC,” it said.Nimrud, about 20 miles (30 km) south of Mosul, was built around 1250 BC. Four centuries later it became capital of the neo-Assyrian empire — at the time the most powerful state on earth, extending to modern-day Egypt, Turkey and Iran.–REUTERS===============R.H.