Egyptian Prosecutor General Nabil Sadek has appealed to the British Public Prosecution to halt the sale of 32 ancient Egyptian artifacts expected to be auctioned at Christie’s hall in London on July 3 and 4.
According to judicial sources on Thursday, the prosecution requested the seizure of the antiquities in preparation to return them to Egypt, in accordance with Egyptian laws on protecting antiquities and relevant international conventions.
The Egyptian Antiquities Ministry submitted communication to the Prosecutor General’s office to take the necessary judicial action in stopping the sale.
Antiquities Minister Khaled al-Anani previously called on the National Committee for Retrieved Antiquities for an emergency meeting last Tuesday, in the presence of Nabil Arabi, former Secretary-General of the Arab League, Mahmoud Talaat, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for cultural relations, and representatives from the Ministry of Justice, Public Prosecution.
The meeting discussed follow-up measures taken to stop the sale and recover the items including a 3,000-year-old stone bust of King Tutankhamun, according to the auction catalog.
The Ministries of Antiquities and Foreign Affairs have addressed the auction hall, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the British Foreign Office to stop the procedures for the sale and seizure of the pieces, and requested the documents of ownership, and restoring them.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm