Friday 14 June 2019

The Same Old Arguments

The same old special pleading arguments from the antiquities trade....
Thanks to ⁦⁩ for publishing my letter on ⁦⁩ Tutankhamen head today. We need a better public information campaign on issues like this to defend legitimate trade while fighting crime

The point is though, if - since 14th November 1970 - there has been an internationally-agreed definition of what constitutes the licit import, export or transfer of ownership of cultural property (1970 Convention Art. 3), why would any careful dealer or collector "not keep" the evidence that those guidelines have been followed? And why would any responsible dealer even think of acquiring an artefact where the seller cannot supply proof that the object is of licit origins? What kind of cowboy business would repeatedly do that just in order to keep going? 

Mr Macquisten suggests this is a case of 'not striking a balance' between 'private property rights and crime prevention'. It is not, it's about the responsibilities of dealers and collectors of portable antiquities.

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