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London and Athens near deal to return Parthenon frieze

According to a newspaper report, Greece and Great Britain are close to an agreement on the return of the famous Parthenon frieze.


The essentials in a nutshell

  • So the works of art must go to Athens on permanent loan.

Parts of the frieze brought to Great Britain in the early 19th century could be returned to Greece on permanent loan “soon,” The Daily Telegraph quoted an anonymous source as saying on Wednesday.

About 40 panels of the famous Parthenon frieze are in Athens, and 56 are in the British Museum in London. Greece has been trying to rescue them for decades. In the early 19th century, parts of the 75-meter-long frieze were removed from the exterior of the Parthenon on the Acropolis in Athens on the orders of the then British ambassador, Lord Elgin, and brought to Great Britain under an agreement with the then Ottoman Empire. .

Talks between the head of the British Museum – former British Treasury Secretary George Osborne – and Greece have reportedly been going on for a year. Head of Govt Kyriakos Mitsotakis returns.

According to the report, the artworks, also known as the “Elgin Marbles”, could be put on permanent loan to Athens to avoid a law preventing the British Museum from taking items from its vast collection.

However, even if a loan agreement is reached, the dispute over the works of art may not be over. According to the Daily Telegraph, Greece wants to continue to fight for the right to parts of the frieze and 17 sculptures. Athens sees Lord Elgin stealing the goods, but Britain believes they were exported legally.

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