ATHENS – Culture Minister Lina Mendoni referred to the recent claims of the British Museum for the Sculptures of the Parthenon, speaking on Tuesday to ‘Parapolitika’ radio station.
According to an announcement of the Ministry of Culture, Mendoni characterised as ‘unhistorical’ the claims of the British Museum that the Sculptures were found in the ruins of the Parthenon, from where Elgin retrieved them.
“These are unhistorical claims. There is indisputable archaeological evidence. The metopes were chopped off. That is, after the embossed surface was cut, the rest of the body was left behind and thrown away, at the time when all these vandalisms took place at the monument. The sawn slabs are on the Acropolis. These are funny things. These are ridiculous claims and can not stand. For many years, the Greek Ministry of Culture, the Greek government and the scientific community have given clear answers,” the minister said and reiterated Greece’s permanent position.
“Greece does not accept ownership and occupation in the British Museum or the United Kingdom, precisely because of the conditions that the Sculptures were stolen.”
Mendoni also reminded that “the only antiquities that Greece claims are the Sculptures of the Parthenon, because on the one hand they were stolen in this way and on the other hand they constitute an organic and integral unit of the Parthenon, which is the symbol of Western Civilization. Greece is not claiming anything else. It is clear. “It only claims the reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures,” she stressed.
Finally, the minister described as “good practice” the Agreement of the Greek government with the Autonomous Government of Sicily and the consent of the Italian Republic for the Fagan fragment, while reiterating that Greece is ready to enter into a bona fide and honest dialogue with the United Kingdom.