Egypt requests the return of eight stolen Islamic reliefs

Nevine El-Aref , Tuesday 8 Oct 2013

Egypt is taking all procedural measures to stop the sale of eight stolen wooden Islamic reliefs at Bonham's auction hall in London

the reliefs

Egypt's Ministry of State of Antiquities (MSA) asked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Tuesday to take all required procedures to stop the sale of eight Islamic wooden reliefs in Bonham's auction hall in London.

MSA minister Mohamed Ibrahim explained that these reliefs were illegally stolen last April from the Dome of Abbasids Caliphs in Al-Sayeda Nafisa area in Old Cairo.

Head of Restituted Antiquities Mohamed Ali told Ahram Online that two days ago an Egyptian living in London sent an email to the MSA notifying them that Bonham's auction hall has eight wooden Islamic reliefs in storage, which it plans to put up for auction next week. 

The MSA, he continued, investigated the information and confirmed that these reliefs were stolen last April from the Dome of Abbasids Caliphs. The reliefs are in a rectangular shape engraved with Quranic verses.

The dome has very distinguished wooden and limestone engravings and was used as a burial place for Abbasid Caliphs during the 7th and 8th century of Hegira. Sons of the fourth Sultan of Egypt from the Mameluke Bahri dynasty, Al-Zaher Bebars El-Bandukdari are also buried there. The dome is 90 square metres wide and 5,50 metres tall.

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