The total number of artifacts brought back from abroad within the scope of the anti-smuggling of historical artifacts increased to 12,076 in 2023 as work to identify and digitize the artifacts continues.
Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy announced on Wednesday the recent data on the cultural assets returned to Turkiye as part of the fight against the smuggling of historical artifacts.
"We continue our efforts to return our cultural properties that belong to these lands but were found to have been taken abroad in the past," Ersoy said at the Turkish Parliament Plan and Budget Commission.
"In this context, the 'Anti-Smuggling Department' was established within our ministry in March 2020. We have also signed bilateral agreements with 12 countries in the field of combating smuggling of cultural property," Ersoy added.
"As a result of these efforts, in 2023, a total of 3,016 artifacts were returned from abroad to the lands where they belong. The total number of artifacts brought from abroad between 2002 and 2023 increased to 12,076," Minister Ersoy noted.