18th of March 2015, a day I will never forget, Bardo museum attack.
Bardo is one of North Africa’s most important archaeological museums. It’s located 4 km west from the sentrum of Tunis, in the district of Bardo.
Much of the museum is located in the harem of the Bardo palace.
It was opened 7th of May 1888. It contains 30 rooms spread over 3 floors. The main part of the museum consists of roman art and ancient mosaics.
There are around 1000 arts of mosaic, everything from floor-decorations to pictures made from small mosaic stones.
The museum shows a widerange historical-artistic overview, from early historical times to the Punic, Greek, Roman, early Christian and arabs eras. see also Historic sites in Tunisia
The departments are divided into Punic-Carthaginian, Roman, early Christian and Islamic.
Two hours before Bardo museum attack
For once we had taken a trip to the sentrum of Tunis. Early in the morning while the air was cool, we were sitting at a sidewalk cafe along the main street looking at the people walking by.
As we were sitting there freezing I remember I was commenting on a couple at the other side of the street wearing t-shirts and short pants. “Monta, it must be tourists.
I don’t understand that they don’t freeze to death”. Maybe they were close to the museum when the tragedy happened. Maybe they are no more.
After a while we went home and as I was reading the news the headlines started ticking in on my feed. My heart was beating faster and my hands were shaking as I was reading about the drama that was happening not far from where we were living.
During Bardo museum attack
My husband was out on an errand so I called him to inform him about what I knew.
As the news got updated I started to realise that this was terrible.
Later that day I had an appointment at my dentist and in the waiting room we were watching the news on Tv.
We were crying.
Crying for those who had been killed and their families and we were crying for the Tunisian people who once again had been hit hard by terror.
Two cruiseships had docked in La Goulette and some of the passengers had decided to visit Bardo museum. At the time when the terror attack happened there were about 200 people inside and around the museum.
Around 12.30 when the museum guards had their coffee break two terrorists striked. First they attacked the tourists who came out from the bus that had arrived. People ran in to the museum to avoid the shooting, but the terrorists followed them.
Desperate and frightened people hid in the various rooms of the museum while the terrorists chased them. 22 people were killed and around 50 people were injured.
Those captured were held as hostages in the entrance hall of the museum. They were terrified. You can only imagine how they felt.
The drama lasted for 3 hours.
The police entered the museum and killed both terrorists while police and armed forces helped people out the backdoor.
IS took the blame and threatened with more terror attacks.
The visiting of bardo museum after the attack
A few days after the terror attack we went to visit the museum. There were not many people there and I really felt the heavy mood.
But we wanted to show our support to this beautiful place and at the same time show the terrorists that they could not win over our fear. I cried my eyes out when I saw the bullet holes they had not covered.
But we were determined to enjoy the beautiful art, the pictures, the statues, the light, everything. We spent hours inside the museum, we could not get enough of the beauty. At the end we took a quiet moment in front of the memorial to remember the dead.
Written by Carita