98 cultural and religious sites of Ukraine were damaged or destroyed during the war, - UNESCO
This is reported by Voice Of America, citing UNESCO.
As a result of the shelling in Ukraine, heritage sites in eight regions of the country were damaged – from sites of the early Middle Ages to those deemed the monuments of early Soviet architecture, UNESCO director for World Heritage Lazarus Elundu Assomo said in an interview with France Press.
According to him, the number of cultural sites affected in Ukraine may increase as the fighting in the country intensifies, and in other regions where the shelling has stopped, access to heritage sites is only now becoming available.
“It will take time to restore some of these places and monuments. And others will probably be impossible to restore," he said.
UNESCO uses satellite images and eyewitness reports to verify information provided by the Ukrainian authorities about the damaged sites.
None of the confirmed damaged sites is included in the UNESCO World Heritage list, such as St. Sophia Cathedral or the monastic buildings of the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra in the capital.
Elundu Assomo warned that any attack on the Unesco-protected Blue Shield cultural heritage building “is a violation of international law and can also be considered a war crime.”
Earlier, the British representative to UNESCO, Laura Davis, reported: "the latest confirmed UNESCO data on cultural sites in Ukraine damaged or destroyed by Russia: 44 religious buildings, 6 museums, 25 historical buildings, 3 theaters, 11 monuments and 1 library."