“The Egyptian Museum is safe and sound,” museum general director Tarek El-Awady declared on Sunday in answer to rumours that the world-renowned museum – which is located adjacent to Cairo’s Tahrir Square – had been subject to looting during the last two days of violent clashes between police and military personnel.
El-Awady told Ahram Online that it was business-as-usual at the museum, which has continued to receive visitors despite the unrest. He went on to point out that more than 13,000 tourists of different nationalities had visited the museum within the last three days.
“Security is tight both inside and outside the museum in order to meet any unexpected developments,” Mostafa Amin, secretary-general of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, confirmed.
The museum was hit with a wave of looting on 28 January – the height of Egypt’s recent revolution – due to a lack of adequate security. At the time, 54 museum artefacts were reported missing, almost half of which have since been recovered.