Archaeologists protest murder of Syrian scholar
ISPARTA – Doğan News Agency
Members of the excavation team working at the ruins of Antioch of Pisidia in the western province of Isparta have staged a sit in at the ancient site to protest the brutal execution of their colleague, Syrian archaeologist Khalid al-Assad, at the hands of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants.
Al-Assad was beheaded by ISIL militants in a local square and his body was hung on public display after the 82-year-old scholar refused to show the militants the treasures of the city, which had been hidden for safe keeping.
The director of the excavation works, Professor Mehmet Özhanlı, and his team from the Süleyman Demirel University Archaeology Department made a press statement condemning the terror attacks, within the protest at the ancient site.
“Lately, over the incidents occurring across Turkey and the world, one can’t sit back and watch. Especially the terror attacks of ISIL in Iraq and Syria in the last two years; our colleague Khalid al-Assad has also been beheaded in the ancient site where he has devoted 50 years; we condemn his brutal execution where his body was hung on a column. We condemn the massacres against not only our colleague, but also other people killed, and ancient artifacts, accordingly” said the statement.