When there was all the publicity surrounding the visit of lawyers to Athens a few weeks back, a journalist from To Vima, the Greek newspaper, contacted me (along with numerous others) with some questions.
The published article in Greek contained a few of the answers I gave, but I think it is worth posting the whole lot in full here.
Bear in mind, that I am not a lawyer – however, I have been present at meetings between lawyers & senior Greek officials in 2011, and party to various other high level discussions on the issue.
What I have written below should not be seen in any ways as a comprehensive discussion of the possible legal approaches, along with their benefits & risks, but merely brief answers based on the specific questions that I was asked.
Do you think it would be a “catastrophic” course of action? If yes, why? In any case, which court would, or should, make such a judgment?
At present, we must remember that all that is happening is that the Greek government is exploring the various options available to them. This is not the first time that such an approach has been considered – previous discussions between the Greek Government, and a team jointly led by Geoffrey Robertson and Norman Palmer took place in early 2011.
I think that anyone (from either side) who states that it would be a “catastrophic course of action”, is either scaremongering, or not fully aware of the range of possible approaches available and the variety of ways in which they might be applied.
One thing to be clear about, is that to achieve the goal of the return of the return of the Marbles, legal action does not necessarily have to succeed, but could merely be a catalyst for precipitating a chain of events leading to their return.
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