February 27, 2017
More and less information has emerged in relation to the murder of excavation workers Anas Ibrahim and Adamu Abdulrahim and kidnapping of professor Peter Breunig and student Johannes Behringer. According to the Associated Press (AP) report, ‘Nigerian security forces… freed’ Breunig and Behringer.
The unfortunately phrased report observed that Kaduna State Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai ‘commended the security agencies for their efforts in securing the release of the Germans’, though he did ‘not say whether anyone had been arrested for the kidnapping[s]’… or for the murders? (However, it was written by a journalist in Kaduna. Presumably, he used “kidnapping” to refer to the entirety of the event, including the murders.)
February 26, 2017
Police have relayed that the two German archaeologists who were kidnapped for ransom, professor Peter Breunig and student Johannes Behringer, have been freed. ‘No ransom was paid when they were freed’, according to the police (paraphrased by Reuters, which I learned via Paul Barford); though, equally, no details were given. Presumably, the police are still in pursuit of the murderers of the attempted rescuers, excavation workers Anas Ibrahim and Adamu Abdulrahim. Events took place around Janjala/Janjela/Jenjela village, Kadarko/Kagargo/Kagarko area (near the road between Kaduna airport and Abuja city), southern Kaduna state, north-western Nigeria.
February 25, 2017
Unfortunately, there has not been any more news on rescue efforts yet. However, I have found more reports with more details, so I have updated my post. Most importantly, I thought that the killed hunters had been security escorts, but other reports have shown that they were excavation workers. So, it is the case that five still-unknown gunmen (two with machetes, three with ‘heavy guns’) have killed two excavation workers, kidnapped two archaeologists in Nigeria. Most of the new information comes from interviews of Sani Aliyu and Usman Kagarko by Premium Times.
February 25, 2017
Around 8.55am on Wednesday morning, abductors with ‘guns and machetes’ kidnapped two archaeologists in Janjala/Janjela/Jenjela village, Kadarko/Kagargo/Kagarko area (near the road between Kaduna airport and Abuja city), southern Kaduna state, north-western Nigeria. Tragically, according to the Archaeological Association of Nigeria, local hunters and excavation workers Anas Ibrahim and Adamu Abdulrahim, ‘who intervened to abort the kidnap’, were shot and killed; the identities of the killed were also given by attempted rescuer Usman Kagarko.
February 21, 2017
Human rights intertwine with archaeology around the work that is done, the material on which the work is done, the material that the work produces, the labourers who do the work and the communities amongst whom the work is done; equally, they intersect over the work that is not done, the material that is neglected, the narratives that are untold and the people who are marginalised.
I’m happy to say that I’ve contributed a chapter on the archaeological profession and human rights to key concepts in public archaeology, which is open access (OA), edited by Gabe Moshenska and published by UCL Press. (And he says that I don’t blog often enough, though he does have a proper job.)
February 16, 2017
This is just a note to say that, happily, I’m assisting with some assessment and planning in Jordan, so I’m going to be in Amman for several months. If anyone wants to discuss trafficking (or anti-trafficking), I’ll be around.
February 15, 2017
Last year, UNESCO hosted a round table on the movement of cultural property in 2016: regulation, international cooperation and professional diligence for the protection of cultural heritage. (See the programme.)
December 15, 2016
By the market’s seemingly only definition, profit, Christie’s Paris auction of sacred images and other antiquities from Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Nepal, Thailand and Tibet was a success. By any other definition, its results were more questionable.
December 14, 2016
Today, Christie’s Paris auction house is offering sacred images and other antiquities from Asia, specifically Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Nepal, Thailand and Tibet. Almost none of the 88 objects has a secure and complete collecting history. Numerous objects appear to have “surfaced“, in archaeologists David Gill and Christopher Chippindale’s term, at this auction.
Thus, with regard to almost all of the 88 objects, there does not appear to be sufficient evidence to reassure ethical buyers that they are not taking any risk of handling stolen cultural goods, illicitly exported cultural goods or illicitly imported cultural goods.
October 31, 2016
Fortunately and unfortunately, I’m going to be staying in Turkey longer than expected, so I won’t be able to go to the International Arts and Antiquities Security Forum (@IAAS_Forum). Happily, the CEO of ARCA (the Association for Research into Crimes against Art, which has its own conference in Amelia, Italy every June), Lynda Albertson, is going to speak instead.