Iraq displays recovered artifacts looted in 2003 US invasion

Recently recovered antiquities are displayed at the foreign ministry, in Baghdad, Iraq, Monday, July 29, 2019. (AP)
Updated 30 July 2019

Iraq displays recovered artifacts looted in 2003 US invasion

  • Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohammed Al-Hakim said his country is determined to recover its lost heritage
  • Many archaeological treasures from Iraq were looted during the chaos that followed the 2003 US invasion

BAGHDAD: Iraqi officials are displaying stolen artifacts from the country’s rich cultural heritage that were recently recovered from Britain and Sweden.
Many archaeological treasures from Iraq, home of the ancient “fertile crescent” considered the cradle of civilization, were looted during the chaos that followed the 2003 US invasion and whisked out of the country.
Now Iraq is making a massive effort to bring these pieces home, working closely with the UN cultural organization.
The artifacts on display Monday at the foreign ministry in Baghdad include archaeological and historical items, such as pottery fragments and shards with writing dating back at least 4,000 years to the ancient Sumerian civilization.
Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohammed Al-Hakim said his country is determined to recover its lost heritage, whatever it takes.


Alaska man discovers 50-year-old message in bottle from Russian Navy

Updated 19 August 2019

Alaska man discovers 50-year-old message in bottle from Russian Navy

  • Then Russian Navy Capt. Anatolii Prokofievich Botsanenko wrote the letter when he was a 36-year-old aboard the Sulak
ANCHORAGE, Alaska: A man discovered a 50-year-old letter in a bottle from the Russian Navy on the shores of western Alaska.
Tyler Ivanoff found the handwritten Russian letter early this month while gathering firewood near Shishmaref about 600 miles (966 kilometers) northwest of Anchorage, television station KTUU reported.
“I was just looking for firewood when I found the bottle,” Tyler Ivanoff said. “When I found the bottle, I had to use a screwdriver to get the message out.”
Ivanoff shared his discovery on Facebook where Russian speakers translated the message to be a greeting from a Cold War Russian sailor dated June 20, 1969. The message included an address and a request for a response from the person who finds it.
Reporters from the state-owned Russian media network, Russia-1, tracked down the original writer, Capt. Anatolii Prokofievich Botsanenko, KTUU reported.
He was skeptical he wrote the note until he saw his signature on the bottom.
“There — exactly!” he exclaimed.
The message was sent while the then 36-year-old was aboard the Sulak, Botsanenko said. Botsanenko shed tears when the Russian television reporter told him the Sulak was sold for scrap in the 1990s.
Botsanenko also showed the reporter some souvenirs from his time on the ship, including the autograph of the wife of a famous Russian spy and Japanese liquor bottles, the latter kept over his wife’s protests.
Ivanoff’s discovery of the bottle was first reported by Nome radio station KNOM.