In 1202, Pope Innocent III, despite wanting to secure papal authority over Byzantium, forbade the crusaders of Western Christendom from committing any atrocious acts against their Christian neighbours.  However, this letter was concealed from the bulk of the army who arrived at Zara on 10–11 November 1202, and the attack proceeded. The citizens of Zara made reference to the fact that they were fellow Catholics by hanging banners marked with crosses from their windows and the walls of the city, but nevertheless the city fell on 24 November 1202 after a brief siege. There was extensive pillaging, and the Venetians and other crusaders came to blows over the division of the spoils. Order was achieved, and the leaders of the expedition agreed to winter in Zara, while considering their next move.  The fortifications of Zara were demolished by the Venetians.