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September 8, 2015

In Homage to Zenobia, 3rd century Queen of Palmyra, Her Statue is Erected in Umayyad Square, Damascus.

Image Credit: SANA
In defiance to the destruction and havoc being wrecked in Palmyra, an imposing statute of Queen Zenobia, the 3rd century queen of Palmyra, has been erected in Damascus at Umayyad Square where it will be on display for the next four days.

The statue represents a component of  the “From Palmyra to Damascus” activity held during the 5th Forum of Arts and Innovation which has been organised by Syria's Ministry of Tourism.  In response to the event's inauguration tourism minister Bisher Yazigi released a press statement regarding the events saying in part that “life in Syria cannot be brought to a standstill despite raging war.”

During the heritage-based forum, the statue of Zenobia will be installed next to another representing Dr.  Khaled al-Asaad, the prominent archeologist who was the director of antiquities and director of the museum in Palmyra for 40 years until his retirement in 2003.  Dr al-Asaad was beheaded August 18, 2015 by Islamic State militants, in front of an assembled crowd, near the ancient ruins he spent his life studying and protecting.  He was 82 years old.

The Forum run through September 9th, and includes the photo exhibition presented in the film below on crimes against Syria’s cultural heritage and historical treasures, documentaries about the Syrian civilization, and a film highlighting the Dr. al-Asaad's work in Palmyra.