Showing results 25 - 36 of 105 for the tag: Archaeology.

July 16, 2012

Cuts to government budgets threaten the security of Greece’s archaeological sites

Posted at 12:51 pm in Greece Archaeology, Similar cases

More coverage of the problems of looting & neglect that the current financial crisis is causing for many of Greece’s archaeological sites.

From:
Nature

Cuts leave Greek heritage in ruins
Austerity measures damaging archaeological research.
Leigh Phillips
20 June 2012

The economic and political turmoil in Greece is not just jeopardizing the country’s economic future, it is also having a devastating effect on the country’s rich cultural past, according to archaeologists in Athens.

Last month, the Association of Greek Archaeologists warned that the economic policies dictated by the European Union and the International Monetary Fund would cause “the destruction of both our country and our cultural heritage”. The austerity measures intended to cut government debt have forced the state archaeological service to slash staff numbers by more than 10%, with a further 35–50% reduction possible. Research and excavations are being abandoned. Museums that can no longer afford to pay for security are being plagued by armed robbers. And organized criminals are exploiting the chaos in an explosion of illegal digs and the trafficking of illicitly procured antiquities.
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July 12, 2012

UK cracks down on rogue metal detector users

Posted at 12:39 pm in Similar cases

There is nothing inherently bad about using a metal detector – but the efforts of many amateur treasure hunters are far closer to looting of the sites than to a documented archaeological excavation.

From:
Yorkshire Post

Battle to stop time bandits selling off our history
Published on Saturday 30 June 2012 06:00

SPECIALIST investigators have launched a nationwide crackdown on rogue metal detectorists amid fears that centuries-old artefacts are being sold on the internet in a global blackmarket trade.

Archaeological experts have revealed there is evidence to suggest historical finds are being bought across the world in a lucrative illicit trade after illegal treasure hunters known as “nighthawks” have targeted internationally-renowned locations.
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June 19, 2012

Two arrested in northern Greece for suspected smuggling of artefacts from illegal excavations

Posted at 1:14 pm in Greece Archaeology, Similar cases

Investigations in Greece have led to the arrests of two people (one a former policeman), for smuggling artefacts that are presumed to have come from an illegal excavation.

Illegal looting such a this will always be a problem in a country such as Greece with a very rich archaeological heritage – but efforts to police it need to be kept up during the current financial difficulties that the country faces.

From:
Washington Post

2 arrested in Greece for alleged antiquities smuggling of ancient gold wreath, armband
By Associated Press, Published: June 8

THESSALONIKI, Greece — A retired policeman and a house painter have been arrested in northern Greece on suspicion of antiquities smuggling after an ancient gold wreath and armband were found in their car, police said Friday.

The suspects were stopped by highway police near the village of Asprovalta, some 40 kilometers (25 miles) east of Thessaloniki late Thursday. Officers, who were working on a tip that the house painter might be trafficking in antiquities, found the 4th century B.C. artifacts in a shoebox under the passenger seat.
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Lack of funds for policing Greek archaeological sites leads to a rise in illicit digs

Posted at 1:07 pm in Greece Archaeology, Similar cases

More coverage of the problems facing many of Greece’s archaeological sites as a result of the ongoing financial difficulties in the country.

From:
New York Times

Greek Antiquities, Long Fragile, Are Endangered by Austerity
By RANDY KENNEDY
Published: June 11, 2012

KYTHIRA, Greece — A jarring public-awareness ad that has appeared recently on Greek television news shows a little girl strolling with her mother through the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, one of the country’s cultural crown jewels. The girl skips off by herself, and as she stands alone before a 2,500-year-old marble statue, a hand suddenly sweeps in from behind, covering her mouth and yanking her away.

An instant later, she reappears, apparently unharmed but staring forlornly at an empty plinth: The kidnappers weren’t after the girl — they were after the statue.
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June 7, 2012

The ongoing destruction of Syria’s heritage

Posted at 2:09 pm in Similar cases

The civil unrest in Syria, has received a lot of coverage that focusses on the human aspects of it – and rightly so. What has not been picked up as much by the press, is how much damage is also being inflicted on many of the country’s ancient sites, that form part of Syria’s history.

From:
Gadling

Destruction, Looting Of Syria’s Ancient Heritage Continues, Report Says
by Sean McLachlan (RSS feed) on Jun 6th 2012 at 10:00AM

The upheaval in Syria has been going on for more than a year now, and in that time thousands of people have been killed, including many civilians and children. Syria’s many ancient sites are also getting damaged. Previously, we’ve talked about how the Syrian army has shelled the ancient city of Palmyra and the Crusader castle Crac des Chevaliers. Both of these are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, of which there are six in the country.

A report by the Global Heritage Fund states that these and many other sites and museums, are getting damaged and looted in the chaos. Sites like Tell Sheikh Hamad, pictured above in this Wikimedia Commons image. This Assyrian town was inhabited for several centuries and archaeologists have found numerous cuneiform inscriptions there. Recently it became a battleground between the Syrian army and deserters. An Assyrian temple reportedly collapsed when it got hit by shellfire and the rest of the site likely suffered serious damage as well.
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May 9, 2012

Protecting archaeological heritage in times of economic crisis

Posted at 1:51 pm in Events, Greece Archaeology

ICOMOS and ICAHM are organising a conference in Athens, looking at way that archaeological heritage can be protected during the current economic crisis. The discussion is not restricted to Greece however, and I imagine will be of interest to many other countries, whose museums and culture departments face massive spending cuts as governments try to balance their budgets.

From:
ICOMOS

ICOMOS Hellenic and ICAHM REGIONAL CONFERENCE: From past experience to new approaches and synergies: the Future of Protection Heritage Management for Archaeological Heritage in Times of Economic Crisis
23.05.2012 – 25.05.2012
Athens, Greece

A regional conference on the future and new challenges facing the Protection and Management of Archaeological Heritage.

The scope of this conference is to present and use past experience with a view to contribute as a think tank to new ways of managing the protection and preservation of our archaeological heritage in times of economic crisis. The challenges are now greater than ever, as the cultural society needs to regroup its forces, reinforce its role, create new synergies and undertake fresh initiatives in order to maintain standards and offer sustainable solutions. The conference will function as a platform for discussion and exchange of ideas by all professionals involved in protection management in these difficult times.

As there are many sectors of occupation which play an important role in protection management and which face serious challenges and threats in the present days but also in view of the future, we have identified 15 topics for distinctive panel discussions during the conference sessions.
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April 25, 2012

Appeal for the protection of Greek cultural heritage

Posted at 12:48 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

Greece’s financial crisis has hit the country’s cultural sector particularly hard – it is easier to cut funding for an archaeology site, than it is for citizens who will vote against the people who made the cuts at the next election.

I’m slightly puzzled by the event in this article though – and the results it intends to produce – they are calling for protection of Greek heritage, with banners in the room where the Parthenon Marbles are, but make no specific mention about the demands for the return of such artefacts (at least not any mentioned in the text).

Note – after this was written, the organisation contacted me to point out that they do also support the return of the Parthenon Marbles.

From:
Greek Reporter

Solidarity Placard for Greeks Inside the British Museum
By Marianna Tsatsou on April 24, 2012

For years, the British Museum has been a sort of guest room for the Parthenon Marbles. Hundreds of tourists visit the Greek sculptures, despite the fact that they are many miles away from their birthplace.

Members of the Coalition of Resistance, President of which is British former politician Tony Benn, showed their support to Greece by hanging a placard writing “Can’t Pay, Won’t Pay. Solidarity for Greece” in the Hellenic Exhibition Hall of the British Museum.
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April 24, 2012

Greece’s austerity plan threatens the country’s antiquities

Posted at 5:17 pm in Greece Archaeology, Similar cases

Another article on the effect that Greece’s financial crisis is having on the country’s ancient sites. As government budgets are cut, there is far less money than before for maintaining the sites & providing security on them, leading to increased levels of damage & looting.

From:
CBC

Greek antiquities threatened by austerity plan
By Adam Carter, CBC News
Posted: Mar 13, 2012 10:02 AM ET
Last Updated: Mar 13, 2012 10:06 AM ET

Sites like the Acropolis and the Parthenon have withstood tsunamis, earthquakes and the ravages of time — but some are questioning whether they can withstand the Greek debt crisis.

Thefts of ancient artifacts and cuts to culture and museum programs are ravaging a place that’s deeply tied to its past.
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Greek antiquities reburied due to lack of funds

Posted at 1:26 pm in Greece Archaeology, Similar cases

Following on from previous coverage of the effects of the Greek financial crisis on the country’s archaeological sites, some archaeological programmes are taking steps to rebury archaeological discoveries, to protect them until such time as there are sufficient funds to allow full excavations to take place. Such a move, also prevents looters from discovering where some of these sites are, removing the requirement for further security.

From:
Canada.com

Greek antiquities reburied for lack of funds: report
Agence France-Presse March 2, 2012

ATHENS – Lack of funding in crisis-hit Greece has stymied archaeological research and leads experts to rebury valuable discoveries to better protect them, a Greek daily reported on Friday.

“Mother Earth is the best protector of our antiquities,” Michalis Tiverios, a professor of archaeology at Thessaloniki’s Aristotelio University, told Ta Nea daily on the sidelines of an annual archaeological congress in the city.
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Using Greece’s ancient assets to support the country in a financial crisis is not a new idea

Posted at 8:14 am in Acropolis, Greece Archaeology

Despite consternation from some quarters about Greece’s plans to generate extra revenue from filming permits, this is far from the first time in its history that the country has looked to its artistic and architectural heritage to fund its way out of a financial crisis. Perhaps current critics ought to be thankful about the non-destructive nature of the policy presently being proposed.

From:
Philadelphia Enquirer

In Greece, an ancient solution to modern crisis
March 04, 2012|By James Romm

Greek opinion is divided over the government’s plan to offer the Parthenon and other heritage sites as film and photo backdrops to raise revenue during the country’s current economic crisis. “This is sacrilege!” one Greek tour guide protested. But others thought that, humbling though the measure might be, it was at least better than begging for foreign bailouts.

For some Greeks, the debate may have evoked a sense of deja vu. Pericles, the great Athenian statesman, also proposed raiding the Parthenon to meet a shortfall nearly 2,500 years ago – challenging the boundaries not just of good taste but of religious taboo.
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April 23, 2012

Thirty five people arrested in Greek antiquities smuggling ring

Posted at 5:11 pm in Greece Archaeology, Similar cases

Greek police have made numerous arrests & recovered thousands of ancient artefacts, following a series of raids in central & northern Greece.

From:
BBC News

3 March 2012 Last updated at 21:20
Arrests in Greek antiquities smuggling ring

Greek police investigating antiquities smuggling have arrested 35 people and recovered thousands of ancient coins and other artefacts.

One of the suspects was found with more than 4,000 coins in his possession.
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April 16, 2012

Italy’s monuments affected by the same austerity problems as Greece’s

Posted at 12:51 pm in Similar cases

Attention on the Eurozone crisis has focused on Greece, but other countries such as Italy have also had to make massive cuts to government budgets, bringing similar problems to their archaeological sites.

From:
Daily Star (Lebanon)

Austerity strikes at Italy’s crumbling treasures
April 13, 2012 12:03 AM
By Gildas Le Roux
Agence France Presse

ROME: After slashing arts budgets and with its most famous monuments badly in need of repair, Italy’s government is increasingly looking to private investors to help it preserve a priceless cultural heritage.

The biggest initiative so far, however, is faltering after billionaire Diego Della Valle said he might pull his 25 million euros ($33 million) to restore the Coliseum following union protests and investigations into the project.
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