On November 23, 2023, the main office of the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities got back artifacts from ancient Egypt. The Wanganui and South Island Museums in New Zealand sent these ancient pieces back.
Dr. Mustafa Waziri, the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, explained that these artifacts were sitting in museums far away in Wanganui and South Island. These museums wanted to give them back and send them home to Egypt.
The Secretary-General praised this step of the two museums. He really appreciated that these museums are all about saving these historical pieces from Egypt. They’re doing it in a way that keeps the identity of different people alive.
He also praised how everyone from the Egyptian Ministries of Tourism and Antiquities, Foreign Affairs, and the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs worked together to bring these things back to Egypt, as reported in an official press release by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.
Mummified falcon and old bits of fabrics
Mr. Shaaban Abdel Gawad, the Director General of the General Administration for the Recovery of Antiquities and Supervisor of the Central Administration for Archaeological Ports, shared his thoughts.
New Zealand returns Egyptian artifacts to Egypt
New Zealand 😮 pic.twitter.com/RAV8XBAkY8
— 🇷🇺 Эсса Али 🆉 Essa Ali 🇦🇪 (@ESSA_A1I) November 23, 2023
He mentioned that a lot of the things they got back are from mummies and old human remains from ancient Egypt. There’s even a mummified falcon and some bits of fabric and boxes.
He said they put these pieces in the Egyptian Museum to get them ready for fixing up. They’re going to do some maintenance and restoration work on them.
He also said that getting back these old artifacts is part of a plan the General Administration for the Recovery of Antiquities is following. They’re asking museums around the world to give back old Egyptian historical pieces, especially human remains.
This plan follows the rules set by the International Council of Museums (ICOM), according to Gawad.
It’s important to mention that a while back, the Egyptian Embassy in New Zealand received these old artifacts.
Representatives from the Wanganui and South Island Museum, the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and a group of local “Maori” people were there, too. They had a ceremony to hand over the remains following their own traditions, as reported by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.
Vatican Returns Parthenon Marbles to Greece
Recently, three Parthenon fragments were returned to Greece from the Vatican Museums collection.
The fragments were repatriated to Greece as a donation by Pope Francis to the Archbishop of the Orthodox Church of Athens and all Greece, His Beatitude Ieronymos II. The Parthenon fragments are now under the care of the Acropolis Museum in Athens.