Sew La Ti Embroidery + [USA]

Near East: Egypt recovers ancient artefacts smuggled to US
Egypt said on Sunday it has recovered 123 ancient artefacts that had been smuggled outside the country and were later confiscated in New York.

Egypt recovers ancient artefacts smuggled to US
Egyptian sarcophagus that dates back to the Greco-Roman era found in a garage
in Brooklyn in 2009 [Credit: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement]

Egypt's major archaeological sites were targeted for looting after the 2011 uprising that toppled former president Hosni Mubarak.

Thousands of artefacts, most obtained from illicit digs, later surfaced on the international market, at auction and on websites.

The 123 artefacts to be returned were "illegally taken outside Egypt, and have been confiscated by the US customs authority in New York," Antiquities Minister Mamdouh al-Damati said in a statement.

Egypt recovers ancient artefacts smuggled to US
One of two Middle Kingdom wooden boat models being returned by the US 
to Egypt [Credit: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement]

"Egypt proved its ownership of the artefacts and the United States has decided to return them."

The items were on a ministry list of smuggled items, and include a group of coloured coffins dating back to the 26th dynasty, a stele from the new kingdom and several Graeco-Roman coins.

Officials say the artefacts will be repatriated in the next few days.

Egypt has signed several agreements that enable it to reclaim such ancient pieces after proving their ownership and that they had been smuggled abroad.

Source: AFP [April 19, 2015]