Britain’s Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn told Greek media “the Parthenon sculptures belong to Greece” and that on entering Downing Street he would begin “constructive talks” with its government to begin the process of their return.
While Greece has long campaigned for their repatriation, opponents say to do so would open the door to requests from dozens of other countries for artworks in British museums to be returned.
In an exclusive interview with Greek newspaper Ta Nea, Jeremy Corbyn agrees that, if elected, he would begin the return of the Parthenon sculptures to Greece. “The Parthenon sculptures belong to Greece,” said Corbyn.
“They were made in Greece and have been there for many centuries until Lord Elgin took them. As with everything stolen or removed from a country that was in the possession or colony – including objects looted from other countries in the past – we should also begin constructive talks with the Greek government on the return of the sculptures,” Corbyn told Ta Nea.
Mr Corbyn has long been a supporter of the marbles’ repatriation, speaking on the issue in parliament in 2014 during one of the many debates there has been on the issue.