Egypt asks Berlin to return Nefertiti bust

The 3,300-year-old bust of Queen Nefertiti has been in Berlin for decades.

Updated: Jan 24, 2011, 15:19 PM IST

Cairo: Egypt is officially requesting the return of the 3,300-year-old bust of Queen Nefertiti that has been in a Berlin museum for decades.

The bust, dating back to the 14th century BC monarch, tops Egypt`s wish list of artefacts the country hopes to bring back as part of a campaign to retrieve thousands of antiquities spirited out during the colonial period and afterward.

Egypt`s Supreme Council of Antiquities on Monday quoted its chief, Zahi Hawass, as saying an official request was sent to German authorities.

Germany has declined past Egyptian requests for the bust`s return, saying it was in Germany legally and is too fragile to move. The bust is currently at Berlin`s Neues Museum.

Egypt contends it was taken out with fraudulent documents in the early 20th century.

Bureau Report