A museum guard displays a burnt ancient manuscript at the Ahmed Baba Institute in Timbuktu on 31 January 2013
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Timbuktu manuscripts 'have not been destroyed'

1 February 2013 Last updated at 18:20 GMT

Since Islamist militants were driven out of Timbuktu, there have been conflicting reports about the state of thousands of priceless ancient manuscripts, dating back to the 15th and 16th centuries.

Researchers now believe that most of the documents had been moved to safe locations and have not been destroyed, as was feared.

Peter Biles reports.