Greece will continue to demand return of Parthenon Marbles, Mendoni says

Greece will continue to demand return of Parthenon Marbles, Mendoni says

Greece will continue to demand the return of the Parthenon Sculptures to Athens and their reunification with the Parthenon, Culture Minister Lina Mendoni said on Friday, responding to recent comments by her British counterpart that returning the sculptures would “open a can of worms.”

In an interview with private broadcaster SKAI radio, the minister said this demand would be expressed “at all levels, both on the level of public opinion but also via the processes of UNESCO.”

The recent comments by her British counterpart, Michelle Donelan, do “not end any discussion on the issue, since, essentially, the [Greek] prime minister, in his briefing with the President of the Republic, put the issue in its absolutely correct dimensions. There is communication. There are contacts, as I wrote recently. A negotiation is very difficult, but it is not impossible,” she said.

On Monday, Donelan told the BBC that the sculptures “belong here in the UK” and should not be returned to Greece.

Reports have suggested the museum’s chairman, George Osborne, is close to agreeing a deal with Greece but Donelan said that permanently returning them was “not his intention.”

She said returning the sculptures to Greece would “open a can of worms,” be a “dangerous road to go down” and “open the gateway to the question of the entire contents of our museums.”

Mendoni said: “The British culture minister is currently conveying her country’s fixed position but the Greek side will continue to apply pressure without moving from its own red lines, from its own fixed position.” [AMNA, BBC]

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