David Pilling // France urged to return museum artefacts to Africa | Financial Times

France urged to return museum artefacts to Africa | Financial Times – France alone, the report said, had at least 90,000 African objects, including from modern-day Chad, Cameroon, Madagascar, Mali, Ivory Coast, Benin, Republic of Congo, Senegal and Guinea. French collections also had artefacts from Ethiopia and the former British colonies of Ghana and Nigeria. Many items labelled as “gifts” were the spoils of war, it said. Many of these works are currently held by the Musée du quai Branly in Paris, founded by former president Jacques Chirac.

The report, which is non-binding, follows Mr Macron’s speech last December in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, in which he said he wanted to start returning cultural artefacts within five years. His position marked an abrupt turnround: a year earlier, Paris had refused to return even a fraction of artefacts to Benin on the grounds of the “inalienability of public French art collections”.

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