Sunday, 3 December 2017

Looted ancient gold jewelry returned to Cambodia from Britain

One of the pieces (Khmer Times)
Cambodia on Saturday welcomed home a set of 10 Angkorian-era gold jewelry pieces, which was stolen from the country several decades ago ('Looted ancient gold jewelry returned to Cambodia from Britain' Xinhua,  2nd Dec 2017):
The ancient artifacts, which were returned from Britain, included a head cover, a pair of pectoral ear pendants, a pair of earrings, a necklace, a pair of armbands, one belt, and one chest band. The artifacts, which adorned a statue during the Angkorian period between the early 9th century and the early 15th century, were looted from Cambodia during the civil war in the 1970s. The London-based gallery Jonathan Tucker Antonia Tozer Asian Art voluntarily returned the jewelry items after Cambodia had concrete evidence to prove that they were stolen from the country, the statement said, adding that Cambodia identified the artifacts when the gallery placed them for sale in November 2016.
What paperwork had the gallery secured before they did so?

Here is the repatriation ceremony (Daily Mail)

(Daily Mail)

(Daily Mail)

(Daily Mail)

Daily Mail:
Officials proudly welcomed the jewellery back to the country Saturday as the items were accompanied from the airport by hundreds of people and flanked by security guards.  "This is a successful mission of all Cambodians, including diplomats and people who love the arts and antiques. Everyone is happy," Chuch Phoeun, secretary of state at Cambodia's Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts, told AFP. [...] The pieces will soon be designated as national heritage items, and will join scores of stolen artefacts that have made their way back to the country in recent years -- many that had been on display in western museums or for sale by dealers. [...]  On Saturday, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen's son Hun Many said it was an honour to have the jewellery back on home soil. "As a Cambodian, I am so proud to be part of this process to bring our ancestors heritage back home," Many, a lawmaker who helped to secure its return, told AFP.

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