Sunday, 27 July 2014

Arrests for Egyptian Antiquity Possession in Malawi

Press Trust of India, '2 Egyptians arrested for possessing illicit antiquities', Business Standard, July 27, 2014.
A 59-year-old Egyptian worker and his son were arrested today after police recovered 604 antiquities of Pharaonic and Roman era from their possession. Gamal Rashid Mandour and his 30-year-old son Odai were arrested in Malawi village in Menya by the Tourist Police Unit for possessing 526 ancient metal coins dating back to the Pharaonic and Roman era and 42 Pharaonic statues, state-run MENA news agency reported.
Baswed on their reported location, it might be assumed that, although the brief text does not state this, these items would have come from the looting of the Malawi Museum a year ago (Aug. 14-17, 2013).It is heartening to see that the people holding them had not been able to find an Egyptian  buyer for these 'hot' items. In September 2013 there were reported to be 873 antiquities still missing. But in December 2013 it was reported that of the 1050 objects believed to be stolen in August: "Ibrahim said that 800 of the items have since been recovered" and I've seen reports putting the number at 900. So this rather begs the question what Mr Mandour is alleged to have had in his possession.

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