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Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | MYT 9:35 PM

Syrian antiquities chief says statues moved from Palmyra

DAMASCUS (Reuters) - Hundreds of statues have been moved from the historic Syrian city of Palmyra to locations safe from Islamic State militants who managed to infiltrate it on Wednesday, the country's antiquities chief told Reuters.

Maamoun Abdulkarim said "small groups" of militants had entered the central city, and called on the Syrian army, opposition and international community to save the UNESCO World Heritage site.

"Hundreds and hundreds of statues we were worried would be smashed and sold are all now in safe places," he said. "The fear is for the museum and the large monuments that cannot be moved," Abdulkarim said. "This is the entire world's battle."

(Reporting by Kinda Makieh; Writing by Tom Perry; editing by John Stonestreet)

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