In a statement issued Friday, the Council slammed the ongoing barbaric terrorist acts in Iraq by the IS and reiterated its condemnation of the destruction of cultural heritage in Iraq and Syria, including targeted destruction of religious sites and objects.

A video released Thursday showed that IS militants armed with sledgehammers and jackhammers demolished the Mosul Museum and smashed its priceless ancient artifacts. Reports say they also burned thousands of books and rare manuscripts from the Mosul Library.

The Security Council noted with concern that IS and other individuals, groups, undertakings and entities associated with Al Qaeda "are generating income from engaging directly or indirectly in the looting and smuggling of cultural heritage items from archaeological sites, museums, libraries, archives, and other sites in Iraq and Syria, which is being used to support their recruitment efforts and strengthen their operational capability to organise and carry out terrorist attacks".

The Council called for a common effort amongst governments and institutions, including those in the region most affected, to counter the group.The jihadi group has forced thousands of people in Iraq, mainly from minority communities, to flee their homes since last year.

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