November 6, 2011 in Nation/World

NATO strikes avoided ancient sites

Associated Press

ROME – Libya’s famed ancient Roman sites, including the sprawling seaside ruins of Leptis Magna, were spared damage by NATO during the recent airstrikes, says a London-based Libyan archaeologist.

Hafed Walda, a research fellow at Kings College, said that he wants to “say thank you to NATO for achieving precision strikes” during its campaign to protect civilians from late dictator Moammar Gadhafi’s regime.

Libya boasts many ancient Roman structures, along with a wealth of ancient artifacts in its major museum in the capital Tripoli and in other museums countrywide.

During the fall of dictator Saddam Hussein in 2003, Iraq’s major museum in Baghdad was looted. Fears were raised on the outbreak of violence in Libya that a similar fate may befall its antiquities and ancient ruins.

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