Jabhat al-Nusra terrorists to smuggle antiquities to Turkey
Tehran, Jabhat al-Nusra, listed as an international terrorist organization, commenced on Friday excavation works at an archeological site in al-Sheikh Mansour area near Saraqeb city in Idleb countryside, SANA quoted Sputnik news agency as revealing in a report.
The excavation, for which technical equipment and twenty foreign experts have been used, is believed to be an attempt to loot the site's antiquities by the terrorist organization.
Quoting local sources, the report said that terrorist organizations in Idleb province, which is home to up to 400 archaeological sites have previously excavated and looted hundreds of archaeological sites and smuggled their contents to foreign countries, including Turkey.
The sources confirmed that Jabhat al-Nusra and affiliated groups have stormed Qunya village in the western countryside of Idleb with large numbers of mercenaries who pillaged valuable archaeological treasures from the monastery and the churches surrounding the village.
The sources pointed out that the terrorist organizations are moving these treasures to the border areas with Turkey where specialized merchants buy them, carry them to Turkey and sell them through several networks set up for this purpose.
According to the same sources, the city of Sarmada near the borders with Turkey has been turned into a market for selling antiquities and weapons, with terrorists using social media to exhibit stolen artifacts and put them for sale.
Source: Islamic Republic News Agency - IRNA