Saturday 18 December 2021

Egypt Deports Ambassador for Smuggling Antiques

Reportedly (Middle East Monitor, Egypt deports UAE ambassador for smuggling antiques):

Cairo has deported United Arab Emirates (UAE) Ambassador Hamad Saeed Al-Shamsi over his involvement in smuggling Egyptian antiques [...] investigations into businessperson Hassan Ratib and his partner, former member of Egyptian Parliament, Alaa Hassanein: "Revealed his involvement in smuggling Egyptian antiquities with Emirati diplomatic bags" [...] The antiquities include a variety of statues, some of which were inside tombs as part of burial offerings.
If these allegations prove to be true, it will be interesting to see whether the Emirates punish the diplomat concerned and return the artefacts.  It seems that there is a lot of evidence concerning the use of diplomatic pouches in trafficking antiquities.

This seems to be part of the fallout from the June 30, 2021 arrest in Egypt of what was reported as a gang of 19 people, including a wealthy businessman and a former MP, for a vast scheme that involved both looting and trafficking antiquities.

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