18th Century Stolen Greek Icons Returned to Greece from Lebanon

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On Tuesday, two eighteenth-century religious Orthodox icons portraying Jesus and the Virgin Mary were returned to Greece from Lebanon. The valuable icons were stolen from a show in Athens in 2016 and are in very good condition. During an auction, they were confiscated, a judicial source said. The investigation was initiated by Lebanon, but it is not clear who stole them or how they were brought to the country.

“The individual who bought the paintings at the Lebanon auction was questioned,” the source said, adding that the purchaser was about to ship them to Germany “to sell them there at an international auction.” The paintings were handed over to Ekaterini Fountoulaki, the Greek ambassador in Beirut, Lebanon. In recent years, Greece has acquired many other religious paintings and scriptures worth thousands of dollars.

This is not the first time Greece has recovered stolen art and antiquities. However, we are hoping that one day Britain will give back the stolen Parthenon Marbles. On July 6, 1801, Lord Elgin was given permission to steal the valuable marbles from Turks as Greece was under Ottoman Turkish rule.

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