Pope Francis has decided to visit the churches destroyed by followers of the Islamic State in Mosul during his historic Iraq visit. Mosul and Akra's Chaldean Archbishop Najeeb Michaeel has confirmed the visit of Pope Francis.
"Nearly all churches in Mosul were used by Islamic State," Archbishop Michaeel said.
"Today, all four churches are either damaged or destroyed after Islamic State militants occupied the city from 2014-2017, desecrated many of the buildings and used them to run its administration, including as a jail and a court," Archbishop Michaeel added.
Standing next to a damaged piece of sculpted alabaster representing the Virgin Mary, Ali Salem, from Iraq's State Board of Antiquities and Heritage, said his team was reviewing many such artefacts to determine which could be repaired and used again.