Saudi Hands Over Illegally Held Iraqi Historical Documents
Saudi Arabia, represented by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH), handed over historical documents to Iraq, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday.
Rustom bin Maqbool Al-Kubaisi, deputy chairman of the national heritage sector at SCTH, handed over the documents to the ambassador of Iraq to the Kingdom, Dr. Kahtan Taha Khalaf, at Riyadh’s National Museum in the King Abdul Aziz Historical Center.
The seized documents were held by an Arab resident in the Kingdom who obtained them illegally and posted some of them online.
They contain 250 papers dating back to the beginning of 1940 and are owned by the Iraq National Library and Archive and related to the ruling family in that period.
The documents were seized inside the territory of the Kingdom with the cooperation of the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Public Prosecutor.
The handover of these documents implements the UNESCO’s Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property, adopted in 1970.
This is the third time that the Kingdom has handed over cultural property to Iraq. It delivered artifacts in 2009-2010 in cooperation with its partners. The Kingdom is keen to preserve world heritage and implement international agreements in this regard.