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Greek Culture Minister Denies ‘London Times’ Parthenon Marbles Story

Photo Source: International Association for the Reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures

Photo Source: International Association for the Reunification of the Parthenon Sculptures

Greek Culture Minister Lydia Koniordou denies a September 18 London Times report titled “Greece Threatens Legal Action to Win Back ‘Stolen’ Elgin Marbles”, stressing that she never implied such action was being taken and that contrary to what was reported the ministry was working to address the years-long issue via diplomatic means.

Culture Minister Lydia Koniordou

Culture Minister Lydia Koniordou

“Greece is at this stage pursuing the strategy of using both diplomatic channels and alternative means of dispute resolution, without however having excluded for the future any possible use of judicial means,” Koniordou said adding that the country does however reserve the right to take legal action as foreseen by international law if it wishes to claim the return of an emblematic cultural asset which legally belongs to Greece, such as the Parthenon Marbles, if and whenever it is deemed appropriate in the future.

The minister went on to add that the distortion of her statements on the issue was meant to “mislead” and does not in any way correspond to reality.

For over three decades, Greece has repeatedly called on the British Museum to return the 2,500-year-old marble sculptures that once adorned the Parthenon and have been the subject of dispute since they were illegally removed and sold by Lord Elgin to the British Museum in 1817.

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