In efforts to prevent the illicit trafficking of antiquities and protect cultural heritage, Greece and Italy recently signed a memorandum of cooperation οn culture.
Greek Culture Minister Lydia Koniordou and her Italian counterpart Dario Franceschini sealed the agreement within the framework of the Greece-Italy High-level Cooperation Council, which was held on Thursday on Corfu. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Italian Premier Paolo Gentiloni, who participated in the 1st Intergovernmental Conference between Greece and Italy held on the island, were also present during the signing.
According to the memorandum, the Greek Culture Ministry and the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Activities and Tourism will jointly work to prevent illegal excavations, as well as the import, export, trafficking or transportation of cultural goods. Furthermore, they will cooperate to promote, recover or return cultural goods to their countries of origin.
“Two countries with a significant cultural past enhance the excellent cooperation they have had so far, in order to combat the illicit trade of antiquities,” the Greek Culture Ministry said in an announcement.
The two ministers agreed to further strengthen the cultural and educational ties of both countries, especially in the field of cultural heritage, by focusing on contemporary art through a series of cultural activities and exchanges, expected to begin in spring 2018.