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Return of Benin bronzes: letter of intent signed

2021-10-14T09:15:56.507Z

Germany and Nigeria have signed a letter of intent that could provide for the return of more than 1,000 bronzes stolen from the former Kingdom of Benin to Nigeria in 2022. The information and culture minister of the West African country, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, announced on Thursday.



Germany and Nigeria have signed a letter of intent that could provide for the return of more than 1,000 bronzes stolen from the former Kingdom of Benin to Nigeria in 2022.

The information and culture minister of the West African country, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, announced on Thursday.

Lagos - The declaration of intent was therefore signed by a German delegation and Nigerian representatives on Wednesday in the capital Abuja.

It should be followed by an agreement between the two countries in December, said Mohammed.

"The German government and the German people have taken a courageous step by declaring their willingness to return the artifacts voluntarily and without great coercion on the part of Nigeria," said the minister.

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Bronzes from the palace of the then Kingdom of Benin can be found in numerous German museums.

Initially, the Linden Museum in Stuttgart, the Museum am Rothenbaum (Hamburg), the Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum (Cologne), the Ethnological Museum Dresden and the Ethnological Museum Berlin are involved in the talks to prepare for returns.

The Berlin Museum alone has around 500 historical objects from the Kingdom of Benin, including around 400 bronzes.

At the end of June, the Board of Trustees of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, to which the Ethnological Museum belongs, cleared the way for negotiations with the competent authorities in Nigeria about the return of objects.

The goal is "substantial returns" in the coming year.

dpa

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2021-10-14

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