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Regarding the extrajudicial document issued by the Greek Ministry of Culture
22 January 2007
Category: News

Having been informed via the Press Release announced by the Ministry of Culture, of the extrajudicial document issued by Minister Mr. George Voulgarakis against Christie's auction house, we state the following:

1.During the fifteen years which have elapsed since the exportation of part of the household effects belonging to the former Greek Royal Family, conclusive evidence concerning the legality of the process has been repeatedly presented. As regards to the ownership status, this was categorically resolved by the European Court of Human Rights, whose verdict acknowledged King Constantine as the legal owner of the property and the chattels in their entirety.
2. The Minister’s remarkable interest in these objects is noteworthy in itself, since
80% of the chattels remain unused, un-restored and unprotected in Tatoi.
Even more so, when
3. Earlier this month, the same Minister offered the very best retort to the question of the ‘legality of the provenance of the objects to be sold’, in his statement to the Parliament. Specifically, on January 3rd, he had verified the following:

In 1990, following the application submitted by the executor of the Royal Property to the Minister of Finance, for permission to export the former king’s household effects, a committee was appointed by mutual agreement of the Ministers of Finance and Culture, comprised of archaeologists and customs officials, for the purpose of identifying the objects which could not be exported due to their archaeological, historical or artistic interest.
The exportation of those chattels comprising part of the former king’s household effects, which are now included in the catalogue of the auction referred to in the aforementioned question, was allowed.
(note: the question submitted by MP Mr. Athanassios Leventis, on 11. 12. 2006).

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