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Belgium Sends Two Smuggled Artefacts Back to Egypt

Belgium helped recover two smuggled artefacts for Egypt, including an Old Kingdom limestone statue and a faience ‘ushabti’ - or funeral figurine - from the Late Period.

As part of Egypt’s mission to rescue its wealth of smuggled artefacts around the world, Belgium has returned two stolen artefacts to the country. The artefacts include a limestone statue of a standing man from the Old Kingdom period, and a faience ‘ushabti’ - or funeral figurine - dating back to the Late Period.

The retrieval of these ancient artefacts was enacted by the Foreign Ministry, the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, the Office of the Public Prosecutor and the Egyptian Embassy in Brussels.

This instance is the latest of a number of retrievals that Egypt has undergone this year, including the recovery of three artifacts from London (including an alabaster statue dating back to the Graeco-Roman era) in June 2021, and the recovery of a 4,000 year old statue of an Old Kingdom priest named Nikaw-Ptah from the Netherlands in July 2021.

In February 2021, the Egyptian Parliament approved a law to punish anyone who steals an artefact with a life sentence and a fine between EGP 1 million to EGP 5 million.