UK returns looted artefacts to Iraq
The British Museum completed the largest ever handover of looted Iraqi artefacts found in Britain in a ceremony at the residence of Iraq’s ambassador in London yesterday.
The collection of 156 inscribed tablets, some more than 4,000 years old, includes administrative documents, letters, school texts and mathematical calculations and helped to confirm the existence of an ancient Sumerian city, the Times reported.
Most date from between 2100BC and 1800BC and come from the third Ur dynasty or Old Babylonian dynasty, inscribed with cuneiform script, one of the oldest forms of writing.
In 2011, customs officials impounded a shipment into Britain from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) that was described on paperwork as “miniature handmade clay tiles” with a declared value of a few hundred pounds.