The Greek Minister of Culture, Nikos Xydakis, has issued a formal response following the British government and British Museum’s formal letters to UNESCO refusing the mediation process.
Mr Xydakis indirectly exhibits his dismay at not having received formal notification of these letters and instead having heard about them through the media. He also states that Greece will continue to pursue the matter of reunification without specifying how this will be done.
Please find a translation of the official statement below:
It is with sadness that we have been informed, and not formally, that the British side categorically refuses UNESCO’s invitation for the commencement of the mediation process for the Parthenon Sculptures located in the British Museum.
The British side has shown a a notable lack of willingness to cooperate and discuss the situation which inidcates that they are deliberately ignoring the guidelines set by the ICPRCP UNESCO committee. Their negativity and lack of respect towards the services of the mediators are surprising as is the ongoing effort to downgrade the importance of a international issue to a matter between museums.
The Greek government will continue its efforts in every way possible and will resubmit the issue anew to the UNESCO General Director, in anticipation of their reaction to the way Britain has handled the situation thus far.
We ask Great Britain to reconsider its position. Greece remains open to every positive gesture.
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