Egypt says never to organize antiquity display in Germany without return of Nefertiti bust
Egypt Sunday said it will never hold any antiquity exhibition in Germany in the future unless Germany temporarily returns the bust of ancient Egyptian Queen Nefertiti, the official news agency MENA reported.
MENA quoted Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities Zahi Hawass as saying that Egypt will request Germany again next week to temporarily return the 3,300-year-old bust for a three-month exhibition in Egypt.
German Culture Minister Bernd Neumann had rejected Egypt's request, saying that Nefertiti's bust was too fragile to leave Berlin for a trip to Egypt, according to MENA.
The painted limestone Nefertiti bust dates from the 14th century BC and is 50 centimeters tall. It is housed in Berlin's Altes Museum on Museum Island and is considered one of the German capital's most important ancient treasures.
It was unearthed by a German archaeologist in 1912 and formed part of a gift of 5,000 objects made to Berlin museums by the philanthropist James Simon in 1920.
Nefertiti, who died roughly in 1336 BC, was wife of the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten in the 14th century BC. She was made worldwide famous by her bust, which is one of the most copied antiquity of ancient Egypt.