The demolishment of the Al-Sarai Mosque's minaret on Friday morning in Basra sparked protests amongst the Sunni community in Iraq.
The Al-Sarai Mosque is a Sunni mosque and is one of the oldest historical mosques in Iraq. It was built in 1727 and was renovated in 1902 by Abdulwahab Pasha bin Ahmed al-Qurtas.
The Governor of Basra Asad al-Edani announced that the demolition of the minaret was due to complaints from citizens that the minaret created obstacles to traffic and the implementation of a strategic road project in the city.
The minaret of Al Saraji mosque in Basra stood 11 metres high and was destroyed at dawn on Friday despite calls by local officials to restore and preserve the site.
"We consider this a crime against humanity and Iraqis," said Mustafa Al Hussaini, director of Basra's antiquities department.
He said they were not informed that the structure would be demolished.
"I am in shock and am getting condolence messages," Mr Al Hussaini added.
"Some officials are even embarrassed to approach me.
With scorching temperatures and power cuts, Wissam Abed cools off from Baghdad's brutal summer by swimming in the Tigris river, but as Iraqi rivers dry up, so does the age-old pastime.
Near a bridge linking the east of the city to the west, Abed stood in the middle of the river, but the water only came up to his waist.
"I live here in Adhamiya, like my grandfather did before me. Year after year, the water situation gets worse," said the 37-year-old, referring to his neighbourhood nestled along the Tigris in northern Baghdad.