The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities recovered 16 Egyptian artifacts from the United States of America in cooperation with the Public Prosecutor’s Office in New York and coordinated with the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The information was stated by Dr. Mostafa Waziri, Secretary-General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, noting that the recovered artifacts had been illegally smuggled from the country, which was proven by investigations conducted in the United States of America in three different cases.
Mr. Shaaban Abdel-Gawad, General Supervisor of the Administration of Recovered Antiquities at the Supreme Council of Antiquities, explained that among the recovered pieces are 6 artifacts from the Metropolitan Museum. These said artifacts were confiscated by the US Attorney’s office in Manhattan, New York, during a major case that involved smuggling several artifacts to the United States.
The United States and France, and investigations are still ongoing in France.
The recovered pieces included:
- A fragment of a wooden sarcophagus covered with a layer of colored plaster depicting the face of a woman
- A limestone panel with hieroglyphic inscriptions and a scene of offerings
- A piece of linen decorated with colorful drawings depicting the story of the crossing of the Red Sea from the Biblical Book of Exodus, divided into five small pieces
- A bronze statue of a man kneeling.
- A limestone shrine decorated with colorful carvings of a person named “Kemis,” who held the title of chief musician
- A funerary plaque from Fayoum portraits depicting a woman from the Roman era.
Additionally, 9 antiquities in an American businessman’s possession were also retrieved. Investigations proved to have been illegally acquired, in addition to a gold coin dating back to the Ptolemaic era.
The pieces will be delivered to the Egyptian Consulate General in New York within the next few days in preparation for their return to the homeland as soon as possible.