Friday,22 February, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1368, (9 - 15 November 2017)
Friday,22 February, 2019
Issue 1368, (9 - 15 November 2017)

Ahram Weekly

Artefacts returned

The Gulf state of Sharjah has handed back a collection of 400 ancient Egyptian and Islamic artefacts illegally smuggled out of Egypt, reports Nevine El-Aref


400 ancient Egyptian and Islamic artefacts

Upon his arrival earlier this week to attend the official opening of the World Youth Forum in Sharm El-Sheikh, Sheikh Sultan bin Mohamed Al-Qasimi, the ruler of the Gulf state of Sharjah, one of the United Arab Emirates, handed back to Egypt a collection of 400 artefacts.

The collection was seized by the Sharjah police in the United Arab Emirates and sent back to Cairo upon the orders of Al-Qasimi. The objects are currently under examination and documentation at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square.

Minister of Antiquities Khaled El-Enany said he appreciated the initiative of Sheikh Al-Qasimi and the UAE authorities, which highlighted their support for preserving Egypt’s heritage and the strong relationship between the two countries. He said that once the artefacts had been unpacked and documented, they would be put on display in a special exhibition at the museum.

400 ancient Egyptian and Islamic artefacts

Shaaban Abdel-Gawad, director of the ministry’s Antiquities Repatriation Department, said that some of the artefacts were very valuable, with most of them dating back to the Pharaonic period and some belonging to the Islamic era.

He said they included a collection of painted false doors carved in stone, copper statuettes of ancient Egyptian deities such as Isis and Osiris, amulets made of faience and eyes made of copper and decorated with blue glass.

Statues of the ancient Egyptian cat deity Bastet were also among the recovered collection, as well as a collection of pots and fragments of diorite statues in the shape of sphinxes.

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