Rishi Sunak’s snub boosts Greek hopes for return of marbles

3 months ago 24

PM’s ‘blunder’ highlights the issue of the disputed Parthenon sculptures, fuelling campaign to send them home to Athens

An air of optimism pervades the Acropolis Museum. Blown in on a breeze from Britain, it has come to fill its cavernous lobby, corridors and upper gallery, home of the embodiment in marble of the glory that was the golden age: the Parthenon sculptures.

In a week when the row over the fifth-century BC antiquities has erupted with renewed vigour, the goalposts have moved in unexpected ways. Which is why Nikos Stampolidis, classical archaeologist by profession, and for the past two years the museum’s director, is in ebullient mood. “It has been a magnificent week,” he told the Observer. “I think it’s fair to say events are moving us forward and are in our favour. I’m hopeful and very optimistic.”

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