France to return looted West African art

France has agreed to return dozens of works of art to Benin more than century after they were plundered from the West African nation.

President Emmanuel Macron said 26 artefacts would be repatriated “without delay” after a report recommended the return of cultural objects stolen from Africa during the colonial era.

The items due to be returned include statues from the Palaces of Abomey taken by the French army in 1892, which are currently in the Quai Branly museum in Paris, The Local reports.

They represent just a handful of some 5,000 works requested by the government in Benin.

The report, written by Senegalese economist Felwine Sarr and French historian Bénédicte Savoy, concluded that unless it could be proven that African artefacts in French museums were obtained legitimately, they…

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