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by Archaeology Newsroom

The Bill concerning the protection against the smuggling of antiquities

The Bill passed by the Ministry of Culture concerning the safe keeping and protection of the country’s cultural heritage, decrees that each action connected with the illegal dealing in antiquities be considered an offence. These offences are punishable by heavy penalties which have, however, doubtful results. The scale of the penalty influences the way protected works of art are evaluated as a) works of culture, b) prominent works of culture c) cultural works of lesser/minor value. There are several tricky points to be found in the bill. One is the classifying of a piece of work as “prominent” after the offence has been committed. Another is the whole structure of the bill according to police logic, thus favouring informers. Last but not least the absence of concern about the activities of illegal foreign dealers in antiquities in our country.