ISIS terrorists bulldozed the ancient biblical city of Nimrud south of Mosul this week. (BBC)
The city of Nimrud is a 3,000 year-old Assyrian city near Mosul.
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Iraqi government officials said IS used heavy machinery to destroy the ancient site.
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) fighters have used a bulldozer to start destroying a 3,000-year-old Assyrian city near Mosul in Iraq, archaeologists and other sources have told Al Jazeera.
The demolition at Nimrud on Thursday comes less than a week after video was released showing ISIL fighters destroying ancient artefacts in a Mosul museum.
“They came at midday with a bulldozer and started destroying the palace,” said an Iraqi official in touch with antiquities staff in Mosul.
She said the winged-bull statues known as lamassu at the gates of the palace of Ashurnasirpal II had been smashed. It was not clear what else had been destroyed on the site, about 20km southeast of Mosul.
In last week’s ISIL video , fighters were shown using power drills and sledgehammers to try to destroy similar statues at the ancient site of Nineveh, within Mosul.
The mutli-tonne figures were placed at the palaces’ gates as protective spirits.
One source told Al Jazeera the fighters warned Mosul residents last week that they would move on to Nimrud next. Hatra, a World Heritage Site, is also believed to be in danger.
ISIS released video last week of the destruction of the Ninewa Museum in Iraq.
The collection in the Ninawa museum dates back to the Assyrian empire.
The winged bulls featured on the Iraqi currency were destroyed.
The winged bulls featured on Iraq currency since the 1950’s are gone forever. pic.twitter.com/IOhn8loOdy
— Ihsan (@Thawra_city) February 26, 2015