DAM THREATENS ANCIENT ASSYRIAN CITY OF ASHUR Mr. Andreas Mavrommatis Special Raporteur of Human Rights in Iraq UN Center for Human Rights Palais de Nations CH-1211 Geneva 10 Switzerland Dear Mr. Mavrommatis, The city of Ashur, the ancient sacred capital of the Assyrian Empire, may be flooded as a result of waters rising behind a new dam near the city, according to the \"Iraq Press\" reported on 23 July, 2001 Government of Iraq intents to flood the ancient city of Ashur, the \"world capital\" and the first capital of the Assyrian Empire, with the waters of Tigris river. The present Assyrian Christian population in Iraq, numbering more than 1.5 million, are the descendents of the Assyrian Empire and are the true indigenous people of Iraq. The ancient city of Ashur was one of the four ancient Assyria\'s capitals and it is our spiritual city which the Assyrians took their name. In furtherance of its Arabization scheme against the minorities in Iraq and to implement its racist and ethnocide policy against the Assyrians, the Iraqi regime has embarked on a sinister project to inundate the ancient Assyrian city of Ashur with water from Tigris river. The proposed “Mackoul” dam and its reservoir will ruin more than 100 Assyrian historical sites, including the city of Ashur. The government of Iraq is trying to severe all connections between the present the Assyrians in Iraq and their glorious history. Assyrians have long suffered under the present government. We are appealing to you to investigate this matter fully and voice your concern against this cultural crime. We are asking that you approch UNESCO\'s World Heritage Committee to inscribe the ancient city of Ashur in its list as a cultural site with \"outstanding universal value.\" Let the committee fulfill its promise of \"working to make sure that future generations can inherit the treasures of the past.\" Sincerely yours,
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