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Official says Islamic State militants blow up 2 mausoleums in Syria's historic town of Palmyra

  • FILE - This file photo released on Sunday, May 17, 2015, by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows the general view of the ancient Roman city of Palmyra, northeast of Damascus, Syria. A Syrian official said Wednesday, June 24, 2015 that the Islamic State group has destroyed two mausoleums in the historic central town of Palmyra. (SANA via AP, File)

    FILE - This file photo released on Sunday, May 17, 2015, by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows the general view of the ancient Roman city of Palmyra, northeast of Damascus, Syria. A Syrian official said Wednesday, June 24, 2015 that the Islamic State group has destroyed two mausoleums in the historic central town of Palmyra. (SANA via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - This file photo released on Sunday, May 17, 2015, by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows the general view of the ancient Roman city of Palmyra, northeast of Damascus, Syria. A Syrian official said Wednesday, June 24, 2015 that the Islamic State group has destroyed two mausoleums in the historic central town of Palmyra. (SANA via AP, File)

    FILE - This file photo released on Sunday, May 17, 2015, by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows the general view of the ancient Roman city of Palmyra, northeast of Damascus, Syria. A Syrian official said Wednesday, June 24, 2015 that the Islamic State group has destroyed two mausoleums in the historic central town of Palmyra. (SANA via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • This undated photo released on June 22, 2015, by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, shows one of two mausoleums blowing up by the Islamic State militants, in the historic central town of Palmyra, Syria. A Syrian official says the Islamic State group has destroyed two mausoleums in the historic central town of Palmyra. Maamoun Abdulkarim, the head of the Antiquities and Museums Department in Damascus, tells The Associated Press that one of the tombs belongs to Mohammad Bin Ali, a descendant of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad’s cousin Imam Ali. (The website of Islamic State militants via AP)

    This undated photo released on June 22, 2015, by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, shows one of two mausoleums blowing up by the Islamic State militants, in the historic central town of Palmyra, Syria. A Syrian official says the Islamic State group has destroyed two mausoleums in the historic central town of Palmyra. Maamoun Abdulkarim, the head of the Antiquities and Museums Department in Damascus, tells The Associated Press that one of the tombs belongs to Mohammad Bin Ali, a descendant of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad’s cousin Imam Ali. (The website of Islamic State militants via AP)  (The Associated Press)

A Syrian official says the Islamic State group has destroyed two mausoleums in the historic central town of Palmyra.

Maamoun Abdulkarim, the head of the Antiquities and Museums Department in Damascus, tells The Associated Press that one of the tombs belongs to Mohammad Bin Ali, a descendant of Islam's Prophet Muhammad's cousin Imam Ali.

Abdulkarim said Wednesday that the tomb was just north of Palmyra.

He said the second tomb was of a Sufi scholar known as Nizar Abu Bahaa Eddine, who was in the town 500 years ago. The tomb is close to the town's famed archaeological site.

Since the Islamic State group captured Palmyra last month, there have been fears that the extremists would blow up archaeological sites as they have in Iraq.