The 2003 Invasion of Iraq, was the start of the conflict known as the Iraq War, or Operation Iraqi Freedom, in which a Coalition force led by the United States and United Kingdom invaded Iraq and toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein in a series of major combat operations.

Statement by the International Committee of the Blue Shield (ICBS) on the impact of a war on cultural heritage in Iraq
March 7th 2003

ICBS expresses its profound concern about the potential damage to, and destruction of, cultural heritage in the event of war in Iraq. Whilst the ICBS is keenly aware that there are other compelling concerns at times of armed conflict, not least the loss of human life, the Committee urges all the governments concerned to work within the spirit of The Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, to protect archives, libraries, monuments and sites, and museums, if war breaks out in Iraq and in the region.