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The famous burial mask of King Tutankhamun on display at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Egypt. Photo by Mark Fischer via Flickr.

Egypt to Sue London Auction House for Selling King Tut Statue Without 'Proving Ownership'

The rare statue was sold to a secret buyer for $6 million, and now the Egyptian government has enlisted international police to track it down.

The Egyptian government has announced its plans to sue the London auction house Christie's, after it went ahead with a sale of a 3,000-year old statue of Pharaoh Tutankhamun.

Last month, the Egyptian government pushed for the cancellation of the sale, demanding that the auction house prove ownership of the relic first. Despite its efforts, the statue was sold for 6 million dollars to a secret buyer last week, as the auction house claimed no wrongdoing in the obtaining or selling of the artifact.

According to Al Jazeera, Egyptian authorities have enlisted Interpol—the world's largest police organization—to track down the bust. Authorities also disclosed plans to hire a British law firm to file a civil suit against the auction house.

READ: Bringing African Artifacts Home


Egypt's Minister of Antiquities, Khaled al-Enany told the BBC, that the ministry would push for the restitution of 32 other cultural relics sold by Christie's, reports BBC Africa.

In June, the Egyptian embassy warned of its plans to involve interpol in an investigation if the bust, which it believed to be stolen, was to be sold "illegally."

"If it's proven that any piece has been illegally moved out of the country, we will take legal action with the Interpol," said an embassy spokesperson. "We will never allow anyone to sell any ancient Egyptian artifact."

Christie's Auction House, however, has maintained that the bust was acquired legally.

This is only Egypt's latest effort to gain back its cultural relics. At the start of the year, a cartouche of King Amenhotep I was returned to Egypt after it was tracked down online and stopped from going on auction in London.

News Brief

Mexican Government Returns Stolen Bronze Sculpture to Nigeria

Mexican customs officials thwarted an attempt to smuggle the ancient Yoruba sculpture into the country.

The Mexican government has recently returned a stolen bronze sculpture to Nigeria according to Vanguard.

The ancient sculpture was seized by customs officials at Mexico City Airport following an attempt to reportedly smuggle the artefact into the country.

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The ornate gilded copper headgear, which features images of Jesus Christ and the Twelve Apostles, was unearthed after refugee-turned-Dutch-citizen Sirak Asfaw contacted Dutch 'art detective' Arthur Brand. (Photo by Jan HENNOP/AFP) (Photo by JAN HENNOP/AFP via Getty Images)

A Stolen 18th Century Ethiopian Crown Has Been Returned from The Netherlands

The crown had been hidden in a Dutch apartment for 20 years.

In one of the latest developments around art repatriation, a stolen 18th century Ethiopian crown that was discovered decades ago in the Netherlands, has been sent back home.

Sirak Asfaw, an Ethiopian who fled to The Netherlands in the '70s, first found the relic in the suitcase of a visitor in 1998, reports BBC Africa. He reportedly protected the item for two decades, before informing Dutch "art crime investigator" Arthur Brand and authorities about his discovery last year.

The crown is one of only 20 in existence and features intricate Biblical depictions of Jesus, God and the Holy Spirit. Historians believe it was given to the church by the warlord Welde Sellase several centuries ago.

Read: Bringing African Artifacts Home

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Listen to an Amapiano Remix of Tshego’s Hit ‘No Ties’ Featuring King Monada and MFR Souls

Tshego and King Monada's 'No Ties' gets an amapiano remix by MFR Souls.

MFR Souls recently gave Tshego's hit single "No Ties" an amapiano remix. The MFR Souls duo is one of the frontrunners of the amapiano subgenre which gained mainstream popularity in South Africa last year.

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Mr Eazi Reveals Artists Recruited Onto emPawa Africa Program

The artist has revealed the 30 artists who'll be joining his talent incubator.

Mr Eazi has just released the list of 30 artists who will be joining his emPawa Africa initiative, a talent incubator for rising African artists on the continent and those in the diaspora.

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