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Article dated July 29, 2021

» Competence Network for the Protection of Cultural Property in Germany ?? NEXUD “will encourage the fight against trade in looted and illegally imported cultural goods. It comprises a variety of highly specialized scientific competencies in universities, non-university research institutions or institutions that preserve cultural assets. In the future, federal and state authorities will be able to systematically access a wide range of scientific expertise in order to be able to quickly verify ancient or archaeological cultural origins as such. This means that the decision can be made more quickly, whether to initiate investigation procedures or to secure suspicious items.

With a three-year pilot phase initially, NEXUD will be implemented jointly by the Federal Government’s Commissioner for Culture and Media and the State Cultural Foundation.

Minister of State for Culture Monica Grotters: “The illicit trade in cultural goods is a crime. It is an assault on all our human heritage and peoples’ identities. In everyday practice, the fight against it repeatedly involves very complex and interdisciplinary questions of the investigative authorities. In unclear cases, your employees need reliable answers from academia immediately. The NEXUD Jurisdiction Network is intended to be a reliable tool for this purpose and, last but not least, to simplify the implementation of cultural property protection law.”

Michael Müller, Governor Mayor of Berlin and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Kulturstiftung der Länder:
» Sensitivity regarding the origin and provenance of art and cultural goods is rightly in more and more focus. The illegal trade in antiquities is also cultural theft and must be stopped. By creating the NEXUD Efficiency Network, we want to provide Federal and State authorities such as State Cultural Authorities, Federal Criminal Police Office and State Criminal Police Offices or Customs, with the urgently needed support in dealing with the illicit trade in archaeological cultural property. I am therefore pleased that the federal government and the regional community are jointly implementing NEXUD through the cultural foundation of the federal states.”

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Professor Markus Hilgert, Secretary General of the Kulturstiftung der Länder: “Cultural goods are looted all over the world and fuel trade. This alone makes the containment of this phenomenon very complex. As the objects involved are identified and categorized, a very broad knowledge of many academic disciplines is necessary: ​​from African Studies and Ancient American Studies to Classical and Near Eastern Archeology and Ancient Near Eastern Studies to Indo-History and East Asian Art History. We are fortunate in Germany to have experts in almost all fields and therefore we can benefit fully.”

In the NEXUD network, scholars from all departments are available to prepare expert reports using standardized procedures. In addition, more training courses serving the national and international networks of all actors in the field of cultural property protection will be offered. The results of the competency network’s work are also documented, archived and systematically evaluated.

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