Miss Mabrouk of Egypt

Check the archives too - a lot of good stuff to enjoy. Me myself? Off to new adventures in the blogosphere, if time permits.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Hosni vs. Hawas

A probe into reports about mysterious damage to a Pharaonic statue during restoration work at the Egyptian Museum was ordered by minister of culture Farouk Hosni on Tuesday, a few hours after the head of the antiquities department, Zahi Hawas had dismissed claims that a statue of Khafre had been found damaged in the museum basement.

Numerous artifacts have been vanishing from museums and archaeological sites around the country. A few weeks ago, officials announced the disappearance of three artifacts from the Egyptian Museum basement, which houses thousands of priceless treasures from different periods. Many other artifacts have also vanished from high-security sites around the country, some of them eventually traced to international antiquities dealers.

In early August a Cairo court sentenced seven Egyptians to jail terms of up to 55 years in the biggest antiquities smuggling case in the country's history. The prosecutions followed the seizure of a cache of more than 600 artifacts from the time of the Pharaohs at London's Heathrow airport.

Meanwhile, the Greco-Roman museum in the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria has been closed and will remain so for two years to allow restoration work to proceed.

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