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Looting of antiquities continue
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kevininabydos
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:49 pm    Post subject: Looting of antiquities continue Reply with quote

Looting of antiquities continues unopposed here in Abydos. Everyday I walk across the desert plain to my land beyond and every day I see evidence of illegal digging. The remains of mummies now litter the plain. 3/4 days ago 10 armed raiders entered the American mission house in Abydos and looted it. Police were frightened off by gun fire from the raiders. What the looters made off with is unknown and it is also unknown whether they gain access to the newly built restoration/storage rooms.
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Horus2
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry to hear that dude. How are you doing there?
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Ranoferhotep
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Kevin, could you be more specific about the area? You speak about remains of mummies, I m surprised, where do these come from?
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Granite
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are there no SCA people around, Kevin?
Whatever you do, stay out of trouble.
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anneke
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, please stay safe.

And I did have the same question Raneferhotep posed. Does this mean there are still a lot of undiscovered tombs there? Or are the mummy remains from a storage facility somewhere?

I guess they would need the army to put a stop to this? Or are SCA officials armed too?
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kevininabydos
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These are Old and Middle Kingdom tombs being looted and yes there a lots of unexcavated tombs here, I know of at least 10 on the route I take to my land. There are "guardians" out on the plain where there are official dig sites but they are unarmed and have no means of communication with the police barracks in the main village. There are no patrols of any kind, day or night.

One car load of looters were chased off from Kom el Sultan early last week, they had aroused the peoples suspicions earlier in the afternoon and someone helping his buffalo give birth in the early hours heard them digging within the enclosure walls and he and his neighbors went out with their guns and they fled in their car leaving one man behind, who was held till the police turned up next morning.

There is little police presence here at night and little enough during the day come to that considering there are 350 of them based here in the village!

I only go to and from my land in day light hours so there is worry about safety, it just breaks my heart to see the destruction and the information lost to research.
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kevininabydos
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 10:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, the last paragraph should have read "there is NO worry about safety". The village is totally safe and if I do go out at night I tend to stay within the village.
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Theban Moon
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the report. I have added it to the Looting Database in case anybody in Egypt able to do something is listening and can get help to Abydos.
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Ranoferhotep
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is very sad, the historical value of these tombs is I guess underestimated. But more important is your safety, and we having first hand reports from your area. Many thanks for that.
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Hekat
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is dreadful Kevin. Have you spoken to anybody from the SCA, your old friend here maybe? After all he worked that area until 5 years ago:wink: We visited him yesterday & he was in fine spirits Smile
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kevininabydos
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 6:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am sad to say the looting continues unabated and unchallenged in Abydos. Everyday more and more tombs are opened, ransacked and the mummy remains are everywhere. The gangs of looters are getting more bold and are now digging into tombs along the sacred way in full view of the American mission house. Vast areas are being cleared in the search for secondary burials which hints at someone with excavation experience working with or directing one of the gangs. What has been happening in the 18th and 12th Dynasty sections to the south I do not know as I do not have occasion to go down there but in the northern section of the plain as many as 10 tombs a night are being opened.
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Ranoferhotep
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 6:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forgive my ignorance, but those tombs being opened now, were already found? Or are you talking about tombs that were known, but yet not opened?
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kevininabydos
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have never seen the "official" map of the known/excavated monuments/artifacts so could not comment. Some of them are shallow/pit type burials without even a mud brick covering so I would assume these are unrecorded. Others are large mud brick mastabas that are being dug out of the plain, I saw one that had two entrances that must have been a little over four meters across the front, most are small mud brick lined chambers. Any pottery within the burials is being smashed, I assume in the hope of finding gold inside. I am trying hard to get the word out so the Pen' Uni mission will send someone with the authority to order night patrols. I was actually challenged today walking back from my land, for the very first time; but that was in day light it is at night that the irreparable damage is being done!
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Aset
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 12:59 am    Post subject: Sign the Petition Reply with quote

help Sign the Petition!
Quote:
We, the undersigned, call on the Egyptian Transitional Authority and Military to immediately restore adequate security measures to the ancient, Islamic, Coptic and Jewish sites, monuments and storehouses, to stop the unprecedented theft and vandalism, and restore adequate protection to the legacy of Egyptian cultural heritage.
Arrow Petition Egypt's Transitional Authority to Provide Adequate Monument and Site Security thumbup

kemet Aset
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Granite
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

At last, the official list of 54 objects missing from the museum at:

http://www.sca-egypt.org/eng/pdfs/Objects%20Missing%20from%20the%20Egyptian%20Museum_2011-03-15.pdf

Odd that some of them haven't been mentioned before. One would have thought they were hard to miss.
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