Demolition work has begun on the building the notorious terror group ISIS used to execute men they believed to be gay or bisexual by throwing them to their deaths.
Located in Mosul, Iraq, the seven-storey building became a well known location where ISIS and its supporters regularly took gruesome photos and filmed videos of suspected gay men as they were thrown to their deaths from the roof as crowds below cheered.
The building’s fate since the defeat of ISIS has divided the community, with some wanting it to remain to remind people of the dark and brutal history that they had to endure, while others wanted it to be replaced with a museum or peace park.
Ultimately, however, the effects of war took its toll on the building’s structure, condemning it to history.
Once home to Iraq’s National Insurance Company before being occupied by the Islamic State group four years ago, the building has been so heavily damaged by explosions that city officials have deemed its restoration not feasible.
🇮🇶 An Iraqi scavenges for metal from the rubble of the destroyed seven-storey Chadirji Building, designed by architect Rifat Chadirji in the 1960s, in Mosul. #AFP
📷 Zaid Al-Obeidi pic.twitter.com/dDAryj9q3b
— Aurelia BAILLY (@AureliaBAILLY) January 14, 2019
— NDTV (@ndtv) January 14, 2019
Municipal official Mohammad Jassem told AFP the Chadirji Building is prone to collapse and it is amongst a number of damaged buildings that they are assessing to see if they can still be restored.
“A committee was formed to study the building and assessed it was no longer viable, and that any restoration at this stage would be futile,” Jassem said.
Currently, only three of its seven stories remain intact.
Mosul resident Samira Ali told reporters that the site is a reminder of all the physical, emotional and mental destruction ISIS has committed and she hopes the structure will be replaced by a museum.
“I hope this building is removed and that a garden or museum is erected in its place,” Ali said.
“It’s a terrifying sight. It reminds me of the death penalty Daesh would mete out against innocent people by throwing them off the roof.”
During the ISIS occupancy, Mosul was also used as a site to record other anti-LGBTIQ propaganda videos and images.