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UNESCO updates list of cultural monuments damaged by Russians in Ukraine: 274 sites in 14 oblasts

Tuesday, 1 August 2023, 12:47

The international organisation UNESCO has confirmed 274 cultural sites in Ukraine being damaged since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion.

"As of 26 July 2023, UNESCO has verified damage to 274 sites since 24 February 2022 – 117 religious sites, 27 museums, 98 buildings of historical and/or artistic interest, 19 monuments, 12 libraries, 1 Archive," UNESCO writes.

The organisation noted that it is conducting a preliminary assessment of the damage to cultural property by cross-checking reports of incidents from several reliable sources.

"UNESCO is also developing, with its partner organizations, a mechanism for independent coordinated assessment of data in Ukraine, including satellite image analysis, in line with provisions of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict," UNESCO added.

In its updated report, the organisation indicates how many and what kinds of monuments were damaged in a particular region of Ukraine.

UNESCO recorded the most damage to cultural sites in Donetsk (78 sites), Kharkiv (55 sites), Kyiv (38 sites), Luhansk (33 sites) and Chernihiv (17 sites) oblasts. There is also damage in Zaporizhzhia and Sumy (12 sites each), Odesa and Mykolaiv (8 sites each), Kherson (6 sites), Zhytomyr (3 sites), Vinnytsia (2 sites), and Dnipropetrovsk and Lviv (1 site each) oblasts.

What cultural sites in the regions have been damaged in the war unleashed by Russia?

Among the damaged monuments in Donetsk Oblast: the Drama Theater in Mariupol, St George's Church in the village of Dolyna, Our Lady of Kazan Orthodox Cathedral in Marinka, Mariupol Museum of Local Lore, Artem House of Culture in Lyman, Al-Qadar Mosque in Bakhmut, and House of Culture in New-York.

The Drama Theater in Mariupol. Photo: Radio Svoboda

Kharkiv Oblast also suffered from the hostilities: Historical "Slovo" building in Kharkiv, Kharkiv National Academic Opera and Ballet Theater, Drobytskyi Yar Holocaust Memorial, Holy Ascension Cathedral (All-Holy Church) in Izium, Memorial to the Victims of Totalitarianism, Hryhorii Skovoroda National Literary Memorial Museum in Skovorodynivka, Polovtsian Stone Women (9th-13th centuries) in Izium, Kupiansk Local Lore Museum, and other monuments.

Among the sites in Kyiv Oblast affected by the Russian attack are Ivankiv Museum, Old church (Tserkva Heorhiyivsʹka) in the village of Zavorychi, Kyiv Oblast, bust of Taras Shevchenko and Monument to St Archangel Michael in Borodianka, Wooden Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Khanenko Museum in Kyiv, the National Museum of Taras Shevchenko in Kyiv, and the Holy Trinity Church (1909-15).

The Khanenko Museum was damaged in a Russian missile attack in October 2022. Photo: Khanenko Museum

In Luhansk Oblast, the following cultural monuments were damaged: Building of the former Soda barracks (built in 1895) in Lysychansk, Islamic Cultural Center Bismillah in Sievierodonetsk, Popasna Railway station built in 1878-93, and Luhansk Oblast Academic Ukrainian Music and Drama Theatre in Sievierodonetsk.

In Chernihiv Oblast, the following facilities were damaged, among others: Historic building of the regional youth centre, formerly the Shchors Cinema, the Military Historical Museum, Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary built in 1801-04 in Novyi Bykiv, Regional Art Museum of H. Galagan, and Memorial house-museum and estate of Mykhailo Kotsiubynskyi.

Memorial house-museum of Mykhailo Kotsiubynskyi in Chernihiv was damaged in March 2022. Photo: Ministry of Culture

Among the damaged monuments in Zaporizhzhia Oblast: Historical and Architectural Museum Popov Manor, Former House of Heinrich Janzen in Orikhiv, Church of Archangel Michael in Komyshuvakha, and Mala Tokmachka House of Culture.

Sumy Oblast was also affected: Okhtyrka City Museum of Local Lore, the main house museum of the estate L. E. Koenig, Locomotive depot Smorodyne, and Trostianets Forest Museum.

In Odesa Oblast, the following were damaged: Odesa Fine Art Museum, Odesa Archaeological Museum, Odesa Maritime Museum, Odesa Literary Museum, St Nicholas Church, Transfiguration Cathedral.

Odesa Literary Museum after the Russian attack on 20 July 2023. Photo: Odesa Literary Museum

In Mykolaiv Oblast, the destruction of the 18th-century Turkish Well monument in Hurivka, the Mykolaiv Academic Art Drama Theatre, the Church of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Kyselivka, and the City Palace of Culture in Ochakiv were recorded.

In Kherson Oblast, the following buildings were damaged: the Assumption Church in Beryslav, the Kherson Academic Regional Puppet Theatre, House-museum of Polina Raiko House in Oleshky, and the building of the former German gymnasium in Vysokopillia.

The Assumption Church in Beryslav was damaged in September 2022. Photo: Ministry of Culture

In Zhytomyr Oblast: the Church of St Nicholas, the Orthodox church near Zhytomyr (Church of the Blessed Virgin of the Ovruch Eparchy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church). In Vinnytsia Oblast: Officers' House in Vinnytsia and the Church of St George the Victorious. In Dnipropetrovsk Oblast: St Oleksii's Church in Velyka Kostromka. In Lviv Oblast: The building of the residential complex for teachers of the Lviv Polytechnic

The full list of cultural monuments damaged by the Russians in Ukraine can be found on the website of UNESCO.

Read more: Lviv mayor criticises UNESCO for its reaction to Russian attack on Lviv

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