Culprits in Legal crosshairs

Culprits in Legal crosshairsCulprits in Legal crosshairs

Despite Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization’s efforts to stop the destruction of Shiraz’s historical texture, three historical houses in the tourist hub were recently demolished.

Sadeghi House, located in the eastern wing of Shah-Cheragh Mosque in Shiraz, was leveled to the ground on Sunday, along with other historical houses in the same area, IRNA reported.

Following the destruction of Shiraz’s historical textures due to the expansion of mosque, ICHHTO, Shah-Cheragh management and Ministry of Roads and Urban Development agreed that the project’s progress must be monitored.

Built in Shiraz, Fars Province in the 13th century, Shah-Cheragh is a mosque and a shrine of two Muslim religious figures: Ahmed ibn Musa and Muhammad ibn Musa, brothers of Imam Reza (AS) whose shrine is in Mashhad, Khorasan Razavi Province.

The destroyed houses join a plethora of other historical houses, such as the Asgharzadeh House and the House of Pour-Navvab, demolished in the past years as part of the mosque’s development project.

The agreement is meant to confine the construction projects within the limits of approved plans and regulations of cultural and historical sites. The deputy for cultural heritage at ICHHTO, Mohammad Hassan Talebiyan, said the destruction operations are a complete breach of the law and Fars judiciary officials had issued orders to immediately stop the operation.

Talebiyan said the organization is in touch with senior provincial officials to prevent further damage to the historical texture of the city.

“We do not yet know who committed these crimes,” he said, “but we are pursuing all legal avenues to bring them to justice.”

ICHHTO is responsible for preserving historical and cultural heritages and determined to follow the case to prosecute those responsible for the act. The inter-organizational agreement obliges urban development council to put an end to the destruction as an irresponsible, illegal and irreparable act, he said.

Head of Fars provincial ICHHTO, Mossayyeb Amiri, echoed Talebiyan’s sentiments.

According to the council’s decision, Sadeghi House was to be restored and preserved without repurposing the structure but has been demolished instead.

Last month, Mehr News Agency reported that 44 historical houses in Shiraz were slated to be restored once their ownership by ICHHTO was renewed.