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Lost Chinese relics find their way back home

By ZHANG RUINAN | China Daily | Updated: 2019-03-08 07:38

Some of the relics are displayed before being returned to China. [Photo/Xinhua]

In March 2011, 14 artifacts were repatriated to China by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, while in December 2015, 22 Chinese artifacts and the fossil of a microraptor (a small winged dinosaur) estimated to be about 120 million years old were returned at the Chinese embassy in Washington.

Hu said the latest repatriation is the result of the long-term cooperation between the US and China, and will further enhance the trust and understanding between the two peoples.

In January, China and the US re-signed the MOU.

Aleisha Woodward, deputy assistant secretary for policy at the US State Department Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, said: "I was thrilled that we were able to sign a new five-year agreement earlier this year in Beijing."

Hu said China has signed bilateral agreements with the US and 20 other nations on combating the theft of relics, excavation and smuggling.

In recent years, the National Cultural Heritage Administration has contributed to the return of some 4,000 Chinese cultural relics on about 30 occasions through diplomatic, judicial and consultation channels.

They include bronze animal heads from the Old Summer Palace, golden ornaments from Dabaozi Mountain in Gansu province and a vessel known as the Bronze Tiger Ying, which dates to the Western Zhou period (1046 BC-771 BC).

Hu said China hopes to further its collaboration and exchanges with the US in combating the looting, theft and smuggling of relics, to help secure an "open and win-win cultural atmosphere in the world".

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