- Middle East/North Africa
A 10-year old German boy has found what appears to be an ancient Egyptian mummy while playing at his grandmother's house in Lower Saxony State, DPA has reported, quoting a Spanish newspaper.
Alexander Kettler made the discovery in his grandmother's storing room.
The sarcophagus containing the bandaged mummy reportedly bore hieroglyphic inscriptions and was accompanied by an object believed to be a "death mask," as well as an acanopic jar used by ancient Egyptians to preserve the entrails of the dead.
Kettler's father was quoted as saying he would have experts examine the mummy in order to authenticate it.
Asked about the steps to be taken by Egypt if the mummy appears to be authentic, Mohamed Abdel Maqsoud, deputy director of the Antiquities Sector at Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities, said that the ministry will first check whether the piece travelled outside the country legally, and will verify whether it is registered at any museum.
Abdel Maqsoud added that authorities will also verify what links the German family has to Egypt and find out whether they work in the field of archaeology.
The ministry official added that diplomacy will be the first option to bring home the mummy if it proves to be an ancient Egyptian artifact, stressing that diplomatic means have proven successful in restoring several artifacts over the past few years.
"Diplomacy is a successful way to resolve these sorts of issues, and it is not costly," Abdel Maqsoud said. "We should first check if the piece left the country legally and find out if it is registered at any museum."
Should diplomacy fail, approaching Interpol would be the next step, he stated.