After a series of failed smuggling attempts, The Antiquities Unit in Hurghada airport foiled on Sunday an attempt of illegally transferring of a triple copper Coptic icon dates back to 18th century before on their way to Germany.
The announcement was declared through a statement published by the ministry of antiquities where Naglaa Elkobrosly, the Director of the Antiquities Unit in Egyptian Airports stated that “Coptic icon is decorated with religious scenes depicting Virgin Mary and Jesus in the Byzantine art style”.
This comes less than a week later after the French authorities returned to Egypt eight relics they had seized in 2010.
In a press release from the Embassy of France on Sunday, the Embassy stated that returning the found ancient pieces came during the short visit of president Abdel Fatah El-Sisi which lasted for three days.
The eight relics are a group of 3000-year-old small statues and heliography boards belong to 1st millennium BC. They were originally confiscated at the house of the British citizens in France before authorities investigations managed to detect a network of smuggling ancient Egyptian antiquities to France going through United Kingdom.
French Ambassador in Egypt handed the Egyptian Ambassador in France the pieces after they underwent examination by Egyptology professors working at the Louvre who stated that they follow Egypt’s authority
The handing process came as a part of the UNESCO’s Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property signed by both countries in 1970.