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Iraq and UAE to Rebuild Iconic Mosul Mosque

The UAE will contribute $50.4 million to rebuild Mosul's Grand Al Nuri Mosque, which was destroyed last year, the country's Culture Minister Noura al Kaabi said on Monday.

The UAE and Iraq have launched a collaboration to reconstruct Mosul's Great Mosque of Al Nuri and its iconic leaning minaret, ravaged last year during battles to retake the city from Daesh.

During the ceremony at Baghdad's National Museum, UAE Culture Minister Noura al Kaabi said her country would contribute $50.4 million for the project.

"The 5 year project is not just about rebuilding the mosque, the minaret and the infrastructure, but also about giving hope to young Iraqis," she said.

"The millenia-old civilisation must be preserved."

The agreement was signed by Kaabi and her Iraqi counterpart, Faryad Rawanduzi, in the presence of UNESCO's Iraq representative Louise Haxthausen.

"This is an ambitious, highly symbolic project for the resurrection of Mosul and Iraq," said Haxthausen.

"The work has already begun, the site is now protected ... we must first clear the site, remove the rubble [and] document, before we can begin reconstructing the mosque and its minaret."

"This is a historic partnership, the largest and unprecedented cooperation to rebuild cultural heritage in Iraq ever," UNESCO chief Audrey Azoulay explained.

The first year of work will focus on documenting and clearing the site, UNESCO said.

The following four years will be focused on the restoration and "faithful reconstruction" of the mosque, its minaret as well as the city's historic gardens and open spaces.

Source: AFP

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