February 25, 2024

England and Greece – Anger over Parthenon Sculptures – News

  • The fact that the Parthenon sculptures are currently on display at the British Museum angers Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.
  • He told the BBC that the art pieces belong to the Acropolis in Athens.
  • But this statement angered Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
  • Sunak canceled a meeting with Mitsotakis in London on Tuesday – without giving a reason.

BBC presenter Laura Kuenssberg asked Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in an interview: “Where do the Parthenon statues look better, in Athens or in the British Museum?”

He explained that the answer was very simple. It is not a question of origin, because that is clear. If some of the sculptures remained in London and the rest in Athens, it would be like dividing the Mona Lisa into two halves.

A meeting with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is also scheduled during his visit to London. But it was canceled without giving a reason. On the other hand, Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden made himself available. Mitsotakis was very disappointed about the short-lived cancellation.

A spokesman for Prime Minister Sunak confirmed that the sculptures had been cared for for generations and he wanted to continue doing so. There are no plans to deviate from the path.

The British Museum houses 15 reliefs, 17 shield figures and 247 feet (75 metres) of original frieze, according to the museum’s website. In the early 19th century, British Ambassador Lord Elgin brought sculptures from Greece to England. Athens has long demanded their return.


The Parthenon sculptures cause disagreements between Great Britain and Greece. In the photo is Prime Minister Mitsotakis.

Reuters/Fabrizio Benche (archive)