Egypt repatriates stolen ancient artifacts from France

CAIRO – Egypt claims to have repatriated nine illegally smuggled artifacts, including statues and coffins, from France.

The Foreign Ministry’s statement on Thursday said the French authorities confiscated the artifacts from a train station in Paris in 2012.

The Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities says the artifacts include parts from five coffins, two cat statues, a representation of a human head made from basalt, and a pharaonic mask made from wood.

Egypt has drastically increased efforts to curb the trade in its antiques in recent years. It has warned foreign museums that it will not help them put exhibits on ancient Egyptian sites unless they return smuggled artifacts.

In November 2014, France agreed to return 239 pieces to Egypt.

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