Britain can’t decide whether it should return its looted treasures back to their rightful owners – Luke McGee


British Museum

Luke McGeeNo matter how much the British government would prefer looted artifacts remain in the UK, critics say it’s already on the wrong side of history. – Luke McGee

Britain is once again reckoning with its imperial history during a week in which two ceremonies were held to mark the return of ancient looted artifacts to Nigeria from the UK.

On Wednesday, a college at the University of Cambridge staged a ceremony acknowledging the official return of a bronze statue of a cockerel to Nigeria’s National Commission for Museums and Monuments.

The cockerel, donated to the university in 1905 by the father of a student, is a Benin Bronze, looted during the 1897 British invasion of Benin city, in modern Nigeria, during which British forces burnt down the royal palace among other buildings and stole priceless artifacts.

French President Emmanuel Macron inspects a 19th-century royal statue representing King Ghezo, exhibited at the Quai Branly museum before it is returned to Benin.

The event at Jesus College was followed by a similar handover at the University of Aberdeen on…

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