During the third — and last — day of his official visit to Greece, Xi Jinping, the President of the People’s Republic of China visited the Acropolis Museum in Athens.
There, at this state-of-the-art museum, in front of the caryatids, President Xi declared his country’s unequivocal support to Greece’s request for the reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures, some of which are currently in London.
“Not only do I agree with the return of the Parthenon Sculptures but you will also have our support because we too have our own pieces of Chinese culture outside the country and we are trying to get them back home,” President Xi told Greek President Prokopios Pavlopoulos.
Pavlopoulos added to Xi’s remarks, saying that the rightful place for the sculptures is ”here, and not in the British Museum.”
”They are possessing them illegally,” Pavlopoulos declared.
Earlier on Tuesday, the President of Greece, along with his wife Vlassia Pavlopoulos Peltsemi, welcomed President Xi and his wife Peng Liyan at the entrance of the Museum.
The two presidential couples were joined by Greek Minister of Culture Lina Mendoni and Dimitris Pantermanlis, the president of the Museum.
President Xi was first given a tour of the area beneath the museum, where the discoveries from an archaeological excavation were recently put on display before the public.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had informed President Xi on Monday about Greece’s longstanding demands to obtain the rest of the sculptures back from London’s British Museum.
”Tomorrow, you will see for yourself how important and just Greece’s request for the reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures is,” the Greek Prime Minister told Xi.
Unfortunately, massive traffic jams occurred all across Athens as a result of the Chinese President’s visit to the Museum, since most of the city’s central streets and avenues have been shut down by police for security reasons.