Stone carvings in Morocco’s High Atlas mountains dating back more than 8,000 years and depicting the sun as a pagan divinity have been destroyed by Salafists, a local rights group said on Wednesday.
“These stone carvings of the sun are more than 8,000 years old. They were destroyed several days ago,” Aboubakr Anghir, a member of the Amazigh (Berber) League for Human Rights, told AFP.
“One of the carvings, called ‘the plaque of the sun,’ predates the arrival of the Phoenicians in Morocco,” Anghir said.
Salafists, Muslims who adhere to a hardline Sunni interpretation of Islam similar to that practised in Saudi Arabia, which strictly prohibits “idolatry,” have enjoyed a surge in strength in Arab Spring countries, benefiting from wider freedom.