MOSCOW, February 13. /TASS/. The exploits of Leningraders who preserved the cultural values of their grand city during the Nazi siege, which lasted from the autumn of 1941 though to January 1944, sets a good example for Iraq to follow, the Iraqi Ambassador in Moscow, Haidar Hadi said on Tuesday at the opening ceremony of an arts exhibition.
The exhibition titled ‘From Babylon to Baghdad: the Modern Painting of Iraq’ opened at Moscow’s famous State Museum of the East.
Hadi recalled that the terrorists of the Islamic State grouping had left behind them destroyed historical monuments and theaters and devastated museums in the parts of the country they had controlled for several years.
"Some people thought Iraqi culture was lost irreparably but the people of Iraq revolted to defeat terrorism and to clear the country’s territory of the terrorists’ perverted ideas," he said.
He voiced the conviction that his fellow-countrymen would restore the damaged cultural heritage like the Leningraders did after the end of the Siege.
"We’re well aware of the Russian people’s exploit in the maintenance of their cultural values, which survived the threat of destruction, burning or loss during World War II," Hadi said. "We recall the resistance that Leningrad put up the Nazi onslaught, the way the residents of the city preserved their cultural relics, museums, and historic palaces and how they did their subsequent postwar restoration."
The ambassador said the restored Leningrad regained its position of a place where tourists flow in from around the world.
He also said the situation in the sphere of security in Iraq had come back to normal and the Iraqis were once again craving for cultural life.
"The Iraqi embassy, on its part, will continue organizing cultural events in Moscow and other Russian cities," Hadi said.