Friday, 17 August 2018

Algeria Arrests Traffickers of Archaeological Remains and Recovers Cultural Property'

The Algerian authorities announced: 'Arrest of 43 traffickers of archaeological remains and recovery of 4427 cultural property' (Fennec News, 18th August 2018) the announcement reads:
More than 43 traffickers of archaeological artefacts and works of art were brought to justice in the first half of the current year, in addition to 4427 cultural property recovered, said a statement from the Cabinet from the Ministry of Culture. The defendants were arrested and the objects recovered thanks to the coordination of the various sectors concerned and the vigilance of the national security corps, the statement added. The Ministry of Culture praised the efforts that "reflect the vigilance and professionalism of the national security bodies in the fight against crime", highlighting "the importance of civil society cooperation and citizens with the security services and the sectors concerned to put an end to the looting of the national cultural heritage, "the statement concludes.
All well and good until we tun to the photo that accompanies it in some media.

as faux-antiquities go, these must be in line for the 'worst ever' award. The pot and brass crucifix might, I guess, be real, but that's only because we don't see them close up.  The rest are Algerian archaeological 'folk art' I would guess. Note the little Nefertiti lurking at the back, she gets everywhere. I wonder whether there is a connection between the timing of this announcement and the US MOU negotiations going on at the moment...

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