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Egypt: Museums and Galleries

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 9th February 2011.

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Photo of Sir David Amess Sir David Amess Conservative, Southend West

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what reports he has received of the looting of the Egyptian Museum, Cairo on 28 January 2011; what recent discussions he has had with the Government of Egypt about protecting the contents of the Egyptian Museum; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

I was troubled by these reports. Egypt has a unique history and the National Museum is a repository of priceless and irreplaceable antiquities.

We have not raised the protection of the contents of the Egyptian Museum with the Egyptian Government, but understand that the army was asked to take responsibility for the protection of public properties, including museums, on 28 January 2011.

We are gravely concerned by the ongoing political unrest in Egypt and utterly condemn the violence that is taking place in Cairo.

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