It has been reported that the Taleban have begun the demolition of two statues of the Budha, the largest rock hewn in the world. The statues date back to 2-5th centuries, when Afghanistan was an important centre of Budhism. The Taleban have condemned the statues as “idols” and an “insult to Islam”. They have also begun to destroy statues in the country’s museums. UNESCO chief, Koichiro Matsuura, has condemned these as acts of vandalism.