Turkish media hurriyetdailynews.com has featured a piece commenting on the sale of looted antiquities by a Turkish citizen, online.
In the article, the Turkish site notes: “An architectural piece from ancient Rome has been put up for sale for 150 Turkish Liras (about $ 28) on an online platform selling second-hand items in the southern province of Antalya.
The piece is on the website labeled as “black and white wooden chest”, regardless of the Latin texts on it.”
Yet in the photos published, the piece of the stonework is obviously Hellenic in origin and the inscription is obviously in Greek.
According to the site “The Culture and Tourism Ministry should do what is necessary immediately and prevent the sale. There are legal loopholes in treasure hunting and people are spoiled by this, “said Soner Ateşoğulları, head of the Turkish Archaeologists Association.
“Treasure hunting should be thwarted. Laws should be regulated and penalties for this should increase. We are for a mechanism that detects and follows illegal excavations, “he said.
Ateşoğulları added that museums attempt to detect and monitor illegal excavations but there is a lack of staff.
“Recently we are seeing that [treasure hunting] has become very popular and we feel uncomfortable as the association. The media, as well, should not incentivize treasure hunting, ” he stressed.”
In essence, apart from the obvious attempt to de-hellenize anything left to remind that Ionia was once Greek and that Greeks continued to inhabit the area until their genocide in 1923, it is also evident that the sale of looted antiquities is an ongoing affair. Of course the noted archaeologist and the site made no mention of the looted antiquities from Iraq and Syria, sold by ISIS through Turkey.