As a result of Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine, 1,373 cultural institutions and more than 550 cultural monuments have been damaged or destroyed. Their reconstruction will require approximately $100 billion. These figures were given in an interview with the Austrian newspaper Die Presse by Halyna Hryhorenko, Deputy Minister of Culture and Information Policy.

“According to our statistics, 1,373 cultural institutions have been damaged or destroyed so far: libraries, museums, theatres, philharmonics, and art schools. More than 550 cultural monuments and more than 200 religious buildings have been damaged or destroyed,” the official said.

As Hryhorenko explained, an essential part of Ukraine’s work is “documenting the damage, following international standards.” In addition, buildings are being conserved to prevent further destruction.

“The World Bank estimates that cultural reconstruction will cost $100 billion,” said the Deputy Minister of Culture and Information Policy.

Russians are looting exhibits from Ukrainian museums

In the interview, the official also said Russians are looting Ukrainian museums and libraries in the occupied territories. For instance, they stole up to 70% of exhibits from Kherson museums. According to Hryhorenko, the robberies are systemic, as similar incidents have occurred in Mariupol, Melitopol, Kharkiv, Izium, Balaklia and other cities.

The Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 explicitly prohibits looting civilian property during wartime.

See also

  • Gospel of early 18th century to restore in Izium, Kharkiv Oblast. The local museum staff saved a 300-year-old book during the Russian occupation. During World War II, it was also hidden by a museum staff under the ground.
  • Exhibition on Ukrainian resistance to debut in Brussels. The Yellow Ribbon, a civil resistance movement, organized a pop-up exhibition in front of the European Parliament highlighting the resistance of Ukrainians living under Russian occupation.