Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Hands Culture Minister Rare Artifacts Dates Back to Different Historical Eras 

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein, handed over to Culture, Tourism and Antiquities Minister Ahmed Fakak Al Badrani, a collection of rare Iraqi artifacts from different historical eras. The handover ceremony took place at the Foreign Ministry’s headquarters, on Monday, July 8, 2024. Minister Fuad Hussein confirmed in a speech he gave, that this day witnessed the achievement of one of the government important goals, announced by the Prime Minister; which is relentless working to retrieve looted and smuggled Iraqi artifacts abroad. Additionally, the Minister indicated that the handover of these artifacts to the Ministry of Culture is the result of the great joint efforts between the Foreign and Culture Ministries and other government agencies, which were represented in the return of an important collection of artifacts from abroad.

Minister Hussein affirmed that retrieving these important artifacts is a victory for the efforts of Iraq in this field, stressing his personal keenness to prepare an effective approach to recover artifacts under the title of “Recovery Diplomacy”. The Minister praised the great role played by the Legal Department in the Ministry and the Iraqi missions in retrieving the antiquities.

Additionally, Minister Hussein stressed that this month will also witness the return of an important collection of Iraqi antiquities from our Embassy in Switzerland, which were handed over to him personally by the Swiss Museum, as well as a rare antiquities collection that was recovered and is in the Iraqi Embassy in Tokyo.

On his part, the Minister of Culture, Tourism and Antiquities delivered a speech in which he expressed his thanks and appreciation to the Minister and the staff of the Foreign Ministry for their great role in recovering the antiquities. He emphasized that these antiquities represent the civilization of Iraq that extends back thousands of years.

It is worth mentioning that the antiquities number 181 pieces, and had been smuggled during different previous periods. Iraq retrieved a group of these antiquities during the recent visit of Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al Sudani to the United States of America. The pieces retrieved from the United States include a bronze piece in the shape of a man, and eight metal boxes containing skeletons that were smuggled from Iraq to Los Angeles in the nineties of the last century from the Nimrud site in Nineveh. Other artifacts were retrieved from Washington, D.C., Jordan, Norway, Germany, and Britain.