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    CultNat Sixth Heritage Salon Discusses Illicit Trafficking of Egyptian Artefacts

    Date published: 18 January 2016

    The Center for Documentation of Cultural and Natural Heritage (CultNat) is organizing, today, a panel discussion entitled "Legal and Illegal Monument Trading ", in its sixth Heritage Salon at CultNat Auditorium in Smart Village.

    CultNat Director Mohamed Farouk said that the Heritage Salon is discussing the effects of legally and illegally acquired artefacts and the negative consequences on the cultural inherited heritage of Egypt. Farouk stated that burglary and smuggling of artifacts started many years ago owing to their historical and material value. The selling of stolen heritage would not have been occurred unless there were monument markets, covered up by the absence of deterrent and regulating laws. The auction houses and museums sell or display these smuggled artefacts in many capitals of the world.

    CultNat Cultural Program Head Sherine el-Shorbagy stated that the Heritage Salon is tackling how these robberies have become a legal trade, as well as mechanisms of this trade abroad. It is also discussing the role of international organizations, state institutions and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), in addition to archaeologists and those interested in protecting Egyptian monuments. The Salon is trying to formulate innovative ideas to retrieve the artifacts currently held abroad whether sold legally or illegally.

    Consultant to Prime Minister for Heritage Affairs and CultNat Founder Dr. Fathi Saleh is delivering a lecture discussing the sequence of heritage laws through ages and their effectiveness. The Head of the Restitution of Antiquities Department at the Ministry of State for Antiquities Ali Ahmed Ali is delivering a lecture, as well, on Egyptian monuments and Egyptís experience in recovering stolen antiquities. General Supervisor of International Organizations of Cultural Heritage and International Cooperation Officer at the Ministry of Antiquities Ahmed Obaid is discussing the role of international organizations and agreements aiming to protect heritage.

    The Center for Documentation of Cultural and Natural Heritage (CultNat) is one of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina (BA) institutions stationed in Cairo, and affiliated to the Ministry of  Communications and Information Technology (MCIT).

    CultNat seeks to apply the latest technology in documenting Egyptian tangible and intangible cultural heritage and natural heritage, which covers information on Egyptís natural and protected areas. CultNat has contributed in documenting and disseminating information on the Egyptian heritage.

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