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Germany returns Mayan artefacts found in cellar


Berlin: Germany on Friday returned a collection of ancient Mayan artefacts to Guatemala and Mexico after police found them stashed in the cellar of a farmhouse in Saxony-Anhalt state last year.

The 13 objects include vases, figurines and plates and date back to between 250 and 850 AD, the regional government of Saxony-Anhalt said. State premier Reiner Haseloff handed them over to Guatemalan ambassador Jorge Lemcke Arevalo and Mexican ambassador Francisco Quiroga at a ceremony in Berlin on Friday.

Eleven of the objects were made in what is now Guatemala but they also include two figurines from Teotihuacan, the largest city in pre-Aztec central Mexico, located about 40 kilometres from Mexico City. “This gives us hope that other owners of similar pieces in private collections will follow the same path” of returning them, Arevalo told a press conference.

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