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Using war to steal artifacts

Wired has posted an interesting article about the theft of priceless artifacts from the National Commercial Bank of Benghazi in Libya last year.

The treasure was kept mostly in two wooden chests, and locked away in a bank vault: thousands of coins, jewelry and figurines, some around 2,600 years old. For decades it sat in the bank, unattended despite the historical and monetary value. Then, as a popular uprising erupted around the downtown bank last winter, someone entered the vault and made off with the trove.

Now, as Interpol searches for the collection on the illegal antiquities markets, questions are still being raised about the nature of the theft. One thing most seem to agree on: The heist was an inside job.

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Story: Mike Elkin, Wired | Photo: Hafed Walda

One thought on “Using war to steal artifacts

  1. I don’t under why, if the treasures had been located and protected in 1961, they weren’t put in museums, galleries and universities all that time.

    That 8,000 historical coins, 300 rings, necklaces, bracelets, medallions, ivory figurines etc had been in the bank vault for 50 years seems in itself a terrible shame!

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