SOCIETY

Sydney hosts international colloquy on Parthenon Marbles

Three organizations devoted to the reunification of the Parthenon Marbles have gathered in Sydney, Australia, for the yearly “Parthenon: An Icon of Global Citizenship” conference. The International Organizing Committee – Australia – for the Restitution of the Parthenon Marbles (IOC-A-RPM) is hosting its British and American counterparts from November 15-17 for the joint conference, which has attracted campaigners, scholars and philhellenes from around the world.

The event concentrates on four themes: education, economy, activism and litigation. Event coordinator Dennis Tritaris notes that “this event will leave a legacy and create opportunities for open discussion between all parties involved not only in relation to the repatriation of the Parthenon Marbles, but also to the relevance of the Parthenon Marbles and the Parthenon as an icon of good global citizenship.”

Notable conference speakers include Greek Ambassador to Australia Haralambos Dafaranos and Yannis Iacovou, the Cypriot High Commissioner to Australia.

The IOC-A-RPM, founded in 1981, is the first committee devoted to returning all Parthenon fragments to Athens, their place of origin. Chairman Emanuel J. Comino founded the organization following his first visit to Europe, a trip that left him confused and angered that Greece’s antiquities were scattered throughout Europe’s museums.

“I will fight on as long as I live until England promises to send the marbles back to Greece,” writes Comino. “They were and remain an integral part of the Parthenon as a monument to the glory of Classical Greece and the civilisation it gave to the world.”