Russian Interpol Bureau Can Help Syria Recover Stolen Cultural Heritage - Director

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Russian Interpol Bureau Can Help Syria Recover Stolen Cultural Heritage - Director

The Russian National Central Bureau at the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) can help Syrian authorities locate cultural heritage items smuggled out of the country, using the organization's tools, the director of the bureau, Roman Gordienko, told Sputnik.

DAMASCUS (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 21st December, 2018) The Russian National Central Bureau at the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) can help Syrian authorities locate cultural heritage items smuggled out of the country, using the organization's tools, the director of the bureau, Roman Gordienko, told Sputnik.

According to Gordienko, Interpol has special recordkeeping systems for stolen cultural heritage items, managed in cooperation with museums and auction houses in different countries.

"Russia has experience in identifying and detecting stolen cultural property, using these INTERPOL tools, so we are ready to share this experience with Syria. Basically, the main task on [Syria's] part is to uncover the very fact of a theft in a timely manner .

.. and add the [smuggled] items to the database, to the recordkeeping system of Interpol's General Secretariat, and make sure that they are tracked," Gordienko said.

A delegation representing the Russian National Central Bureau is currently visiting Damascus to discuss the development of cooperation with their Syrian colleagues.

Over the course of civil war, Syria has seen large parts of its cultural heritage looted and destroyed by smugglers and terrorists, for whom sales of illegally obtained archaeological items serve as one of the main sources of income. According to Syrian authorities, the cost of all illegally obtained archaeological items that were taken out of Syria could amount to hundreds of millions of Dollars.�