Saturday, May 13, 2006

Ongoing dispute over St Louis Mask (
The Saint Louis Art Museum will keep a 3,200-year-old mummy mask, unless it sees more proof it belongs to Egypt. The museum will not meet a May 15 deadline set by Egyptian antiquities authorities to return the mask, museum director Brent Benjamin said yesterday. (
Benjamin has said the museum exercised due diligence in 1998 at the time of the acquisition to determine whether the mask had been legally exported from Egypt.He said Friday that the museum independently verified the mask's known provenance, or history of ownership; that it contacted the Art Loss Register and Interpol to see if the mask had been reported missing, lost or stolen; and that it consulted with Mohammed Saleh, then director of the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, to ensure that the pending purchase was appropriate.Hawass has not specified what action he would take if the Monday deadline were not met.

Also covered on the Washington Post:

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