Paris museum pulls fishy statue

26th January 2007, Comments 0 comments

ATHENS, Jan 25, 2007 (AFP) - The Louvre in Paris has bowed to a request from Greece not to display an antique statue fished out of the sea in the 1990s due to suspicions of foul play, authorities here said Thursday.

ATHENS, Jan 25, 2007 (AFP) - The Louvre in Paris has bowed to a request from Greece not to display an antique statue fished out of the sea in the 1990s due to suspicions of foul play, authorities here said Thursday.

Greece had threatened not to loan to the Louvre a series of works by the fourth century BC sculptor Praxiteles for a exhibition at the Paris museum later this year if the rare bronze statue of Apollo was not pulled.

The life-size statue, known as "Apollo Sauroktonos" ("Lizard-Slayer"), was pulled out the sea in international waters between Italy and Greece by an Italian boat in the early 1990s.

It then found its way into the hands of a private Lebanese collector who sold it to the Cleveland Museum of Art in Ohio.

The US museum, which loaned the statue to the Louvre, says it bought the statue in good faith, Greek media reported.

But Greek authorities believe that the statue may have been through the hands of an international network of criminals trafficking ancient works of art.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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