DAKAR Jan 30 The vast majority of Timbuktu's
ancient manuscripts in state and private collections appear to
be unharmed after the city's 10-month occupation by Islamist
rebel fighters, who did burn some of the scripts, experts said
"I can say that the vast majority of the collections appear
from our reports not to have been destroyed, damaged or harmed
in any way," Cape Town University's Professor Shamil Jeppie, an
expert on the Saharan city's manuscripts, told Reuters.
A Malian source also directly involved with the conservation
of the Timbuktu manuscripts told Reuters 95 percent of the total
documents, estimated to number just over 300,000 in the city and
region, were "safe and sound".
(Reporting By Pascal Fletcher; Editing by David Lewis)