The Ministry of Antiquities mission to recover stolen and illegally smuggled antiquities has successfully seen the repatriation of a relief with the cartouch of King Amenhotep I.
Supervisor General of Antiquities of the repatriation department Shabaan Abdel Gawad explained to Ahram Online that the relief was first noticed by a foreign archaeologist a few months ago, when it was put on sale in an auction hall in London.
Gawad said the archaeologist realised that the relief is the same one that was stolen in 1988 from the open-air museum in Karnak Temple Complex in Luxor, as the relief is carved in limestone and inscribed with the name of king Amenhotep I.
The archeologist then promptly reported the incident to the Ministry of Antiquities. The ministry then took all necesasary legal and diplomatic procedures to stop the sale of the relief, and return it to Egypt.
The relief, Abdel Gawad said, was handed over to the Egyptian embassy in London yesterday and is to set to come home within days.