Armed conflicts have always had a devastating effect on culture and heritage, including through intentional destructions of significant markers of identity. Destructive ideologies are also not new in history. In recent decades, however, culture has been increasingly at the frontline of conflicts, with violent extremism becoming a significant driver. Today, threats to cultural heritage in the event of armed conflict result from intentional destruction, collateral damage, forced neglect, as well as from the organized looting and illicit trafficking of cultural objects, which today occurs at an unprecedented scale.
Browse the images of humanity’s threatened heritage.