Michalis Liapis, the Minister for Culture, has stepped up the campaign against looted antiquities in Greece. He has also indicated that other objects have been identified from photographs and that more returns can be expected in the near future.
Are these pieces on the market or have they already passed into public and private collections? Are we about to see returns on the scale of those from North America to Italy? (See the material exhibited in Nostoi.)
Greece's strategy seems to be threefold:
- material known to have been stolen from museum collections and archaeological sites (e.g. the Gortyn Apollo; Corinth museum; a stela from the Thebes museum)
- newly looted (or surfaced) material (e.g. the Attic marble lekythos; a gold wreath, a marble tombstone, and a marble kore; the "Preveza" athlete [or the Saarbrücken youth]; the Aidonia treasure)
- historic material that left Greece before the 1970 UNESCO Convention or even the formation of the modern state of Greece (e.g. the Parthenon marbles)
From the Hellenic Ministry of Culture press release