Battle over ancient relic pits Ankara against Christie's

Published 29.04.2017 00:00

Turkey has two months to prove it is the rightful owner of Guennol Stargazer, a 5,000-year-old peculiar statue smuggled from the country as it launched a legal battle against Christie's auction house bidding it off.

The statue, originally found in the Gelibolu (Gallipoli) Peninsula in western Turkey, was up for auction in Christie's in New York as Daily Sabah went to print on Friday, despite Ankara's objections. A U.S. court gave Turkey 60 days to prove its claim and in this period, the artifact will not be delivered to the winning bidder.

Speaking to reporters in Istanbul on Friday, Culture and Tourism Minister Nabi Avcı said they found out about the auction weeks ago and were in negotiations with the auction house about the sale.

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