French Museum Boss Claims Report Urging Return of Looted African Treasures Taints All ‘With Impurity of Colonial Cr…


The president of the Quai Branly-Jacques Chirac Museum, Paris, has hit back against a landmark study commissioned by the French president Emmanuel Macron, which recommends the permanent return of colonial spoils to their country of origin. Stéphane Martin said the report, authored by the Senegalese writer and economist Felwine Sarr and French historian Bénédicte Savoy, had tainted ‘everything that was collected and bought during the colonial period with the impurity of the colonial crime.’

Speaking to AFP, Martin argued against the recommendations of the report, saying changing the law would ‘open [..] the door to complete maximalist restitution’. Instead, he suggested African artworks should be ‘circulated more widely’ and criticized the report, saying it ‘puts historical…

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