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France to return ancient treasures to Egypt | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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PARIS (AP) – France plans to return five fragments of an ancient wall painting to Egypt next week, ending a feud over their ownership.

President Nicolas Sarkozy’s office says the pieces will be returned to Egypt on Monday, the same day the French leader hosts his Egyptian counterpart Hosni Mubarak for lunch. The announcement came Friday.

France’s culture minister agreed in October to return the treasures after Egypt cut ties with Paris’ Louvre Museum over the issue. The painted wall fragments come from a 3,200-year-old tomb near the ancient temple city of Luxor.

Zahi Hawass, Egypt’s chief archaeologist, is leading aggressive efforts to reclaim what he says are antiquities stolen from the country and purchased by leading world.