The US Congress’ caucus on Hellenic Issues has sent a letter to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson urging him to negotiate with the Greek government “in earnest” regarding the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece.
“The Marbles have been the source of controversy among western allies for many decades,” the September 18 letter said. “Greece has long wanted these Parthenon Marbles back.”
The bipartisan letter was signed by 18 members of Congress, including Democrats and Republicans, who proposed that the sculptures be returned to Greece by 2021.
Greece’s government has also sought for a 2021 return of the ancient sculptures to coincide with the country’s 200th anniversary of the Greek War of Independence against the Ottoman empire.
“The Parthenon Sculptures are a product of theft,” Greek Culture and Sports Minister Lina Mendoni said in a video statement. “Therefore, Greece will never recognize the possession, prefecture and ownership of the British Museum.”
The letter from Congress to Boris Johnson came slightly more than two weeks after protestors gathered at the British Museum’s re-opening on August 27.
“We remain appreciative of your efforts and good will in support of the historic special relationship between the United Kingdom and the United States, and look forward to strengthening that relationship through the accomplishment of matters such as this,” the congressmembers wrote.
The full letter is available for viewing here.
Featured image at the top of this article: LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 22: Sections of the Parthenon Marbles also known as the Elgin Marbles are displayed at The British Museum on November 22, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
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