Wednesday, 2023.03.22
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Tag: Cultural Property Issues

Destroyed and Looted: What the War Does to Ukraine’s Cultural Heritage

War and destruction in Ukraine don’t spare cultural institutions, as a UNESCO report demonstrates. Museums in the Russian-occupied territories face another threat – systematic looting.

Death Sentence for Taking Home a Vacation Souvenir?

A Briton and a German accused of smuggling antiquities were on trial in Iraq. Wanting to take home a few old shards and pieces of marble as vacation souvenirs, the men ran the risk of being sentenced to death. Now the verdict was announced.

Is Egypt Breaking Its Own Laws?

Sotheby’s sold an Egyptian statue with exceptional provenance for about $10 million. The case could be a bombshell for the entire trade and the museum world: Egypt revoked the 1921 export licence and is now demanding the piece back.

USA Impose “Emergency” Import Restrictions on Afghan Cultural Goods

Will the USA repatriate Afghan cultural goods to the Talibans? New US import restrictions raise such questions as expert Peter Tompa explains. Read here which coins are affected.

Nation-Building with Archaeology: Iraq, Syria and Libya

Authoritarian leaders in the Middle East use the message of ancient greatness to disguise and excuse their own failings. Kate Fitz Gibbon demonstrates how they employ archaeology and historical narratives of a glorious past.

Can the NEXUD AI App Really Detect Illicit Cultural Objects?

The German government has awarded a €600,000 grant to NEXUD, a follow up of the ILLICID project relating to illicit antiquities. One day, an AI app may assist police and customs in detecting illegal objects. But this project just wastes money as Kate Fitz Gibbon explains.

Looting and Smuggling in Syria? A Complicated Matter

A TV interview with former Lebanese Minister of the Interior, Nohad Machnouk, went viral: in the background appear ancient objects allegedly looted in Syrian Palmyra. But as Ivan Macquisten shows, this story is much more complicated.

Webinar on Measuring the Illicit Antiquities Trade in Data and Dollars

A webinar co-organized by the Antiquities Coalition discussed the illegal trade of coins. No surprise that the panel was mainly hostile against collecting. The event shows how little attention recent studies have received so far.

What Shall We Do With Treasure Shipwrecks?

Millions of coins were recovered from shipwrecks on the bottom of the sea. But what should we do with them? Gary Beals explains his point of view.

Help Prevent Trafficking in Afghanistan’s Cultural Heritage!

Will cultural property from Afghanistan enter the black art market? The Afghan crisis has given rise to serious concerns about the fate of the country’s heritage under the Taliban. International dealers’ associations announce how they oppose this danger.