Ancient relics targeted in the uprising

2011-02-05 15:32

Ancient Egyptian history is another of the casualties of the chaos that has reigned throughout Egypt in recent weeks.

From throughout the country, reports are coming in of museums and archaeological sites being looted and vandalised.

Museum curators and dealers in antiquities around the word have now been put on alert to watch out for a potential flood of stolen artifacts from the land of the pharaohs.

Tragically, many of the thieves appear unaware of the cultural, let alone relative material value, of the artefacts, grabbing only what can be easily carried or concealed while often smashing priceless objects.

Soon after the first major demonstrations, looters attacked the famous National Museum in downtown Cairo.

Museum officials say a number of relics were damaged, at least a dozen glass cases were smashed and two mummies were decapitated.

A more than 3 000-year-old wooden statue of King Tutankhamen seated on a panther was thrown to the floor but seems not to have been badly damaged.

Last weekend the Egyptian army secured the museum and detained about 50 men with help from Cairo citizens and young men who formed a human chain outside the building to protect it.

However, Egyptologists and archaeologists say the bigger losses will be at lesser-known museums and storage facilities outside Cairo.

They fear more thefts and damage might occur in coming days.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.