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US ambassador supports Elgin Marbles return

The US ambassador to Greece, Daniel Speckhard has stated that he understands the importance of the Elgin Marbles issue to the Greek People. Hopefully he will use his power to raise the profile of the issue in future.

Hellenic News of America [1]

7th March 2008
Speckhard wants to promote Greek-American cultural relations

Athens- During his visit to Minister of Culture Michalis Liapis yesterday, U.S. Ambassador Speckhard said: “I told the minister that I have a special love and appreciation for the arts and culture, and I am particularly fascinated by the arts and culture in Greece. I believe that this area is as important as economics and politics in terms of building the relationship between our countries, and good understanding between the Greek and American people.

I intend during my tenure here to work closely with him and his ministry to expand and promote our exchanges in culture and the arts and build a better understanding between the Greek and American people.” In response to a question on his opinion about the Marbles of the Parthenon, Speckhard said: “The minister mentioned how important this is to the Greek people. I can sympathize with his point of view after seeing the beautiful museum you have created here for the Acropolis artifacts, so I told him I very much understood the issue.

Asked during his visit to the Minister of Culture yesterday on the course of the name issue, Speckhard said: “We are still very hopeful that there will be an agreement. I think in talking to my Greek counterparts that they very much want to see the successful outcomes of those negotiations. And we have heard the same from the leaders in Skopje. So I think there is still time for this issue to be worked out.”