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Emergency Red List of Iraqi Antiquities at Risk

This document has been designed as a tool for customs officials, police officers, art dealers and collectors to help them to recognize objects that could originate from Iraq.

This Red List describes the general types of artefacts most favoured by the illegal antiquities market, so that these may be identified and detained wherever they surface. They are protected by legislation, banned from export and may under no circumstances be imported or put on sale. An appeal is therefore being made to museums, auction houses, art dealers and collectors not to acquire them.

This is a list of the types of objects from Iraq which are particularly at risk and are likely to have been stolen. It is in no way exhaustive. Because of the tremendous variety of objects, styles, and periods, any antiquity from Iraq should be treated with suspicion.

This Red List was drawn up by a group of 12 international experts during a meeting held at the Interpol headquarters in Lyon (France) on 7 May 2003.

The Emergency Red List of Iraqi Antiquities at Risk - Version 2015:

The Emergency Red List of Iraqi Cultural Objects at Risk - 2015 


The Emergency Red List of Iraqi Antiquities at Risk - Version 2003:

Download the Emergency Red List of Iraqi Antiquities at Risk in English 

Download the Emergency Red List of Iraqi Antiquities at Risk in Arabic 

Download the Emergency Red List of Iraqi Antiquities at Risk in French 


Cultural heritage in Iraq has suffered seriously as a result of war. Many objects have been looted and stolen from museums and archaeological sites and risk appearing on the market through illicit trafficking.
Although the Iraq museum in Baghdad is not the only place that has suffered, it is certainly by far the most important institution. The museum has been looted and is missing a great part of its former collection. The Iraq Museum is a national archaeological museum that serves as the repository for all artefacts from excavations in Iraq. It contains hundreds of thousands of objects covering 10,000 years of human civilization, representing many different cultures and styles. The bulk of the collection dates between 8000 BC and 1800 AD, and comprises objects made of clay, stone, pottery, metal, bone, ivory, cloth, paper, glass, and wood.