|Egypt retrieves ancient coffin from U.S.|
|Saturday, 13 March 2010|
Egypt on Saturday retrieved a 3,000-year-old ancient coffin from the United States, state-run Middle East News Agency (MENA) reported.
Secretary General of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) Zahi Hawwas returned to Cairo on Saturday with the wooden coffin on board an EgyptAir flight from New York.
Hawwas first received the casket, dating back to the 21st dynasty, at a major ceremony in the U.S. National Geographic Society in Washington.
The coffin, which belongs to a noble man called "Emus," was smuggled from Egypt some 100 years ago.
It was confiscated by U.S. authorities at the Miami airport in October 2008 from a shipment coming from Spain after the importer could not present proper documentation to prove ownership.
The coffin will be on display at the Egyptian Museum on April 17 among many other retrieved antiquities, MENA reported.
Hawwas said Egypt has managed to retrieve 31,000 artifacts smuggled from Egypt within the framework of a new strategy to retrieve the antiquities which were spirited out of the country during the colonial period.
Among the most famous Egyptian monuments that Egypt wants to retrieve are the Rosetta Stone which is now in Britain, and the bust of Queen Nefertiti which is now in Germany.
In February, the Egyptian parliament ratified a new antiquities- preservation law which included applying tougher penalties to artifacts traffickers.
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