Public Policy/Advocacy

AAA Signs Statement of Support for Egypt

In conjunction with the Archaeological Institute of America, AAA signs Statement of Support for Egypt. This statement shares its concern for the Egyptian people and the loss of cultural heritage that Egypt has sustained and the threat of further losses. AAA pleads for Egyptian authorities to utilize their authority to protect their country's irreplaceable cultural heritage and calls US and EU law enforcement to take action on the appearance of looted Egyptian antiquities at their borders.


The undersigned cultural heritage and archaeological organizations express their concern over the loss of life and injury to humans during the protests in Egypt this week. We support the desire of the Egyptian people to exercise their basic civil rights. We also share their concern about the losses to cultural heritage that Egypt has already sustained and the threat of further such losses over the coming days.

Brave actions taken by the citizens of Cairo and the military largely protected the Cairo Museum. However, numerous sites, museums and storage areas located outside of Cairo are even more vulnerable. As the prisons are opened, the potential for greater loss is created. Multiple reports now say that damage has been done to storage areas and tombs in Abusir and Saqqara and that looting is occurring there and in other locations.

We call on the Egyptian authorities to exercise their responsibilities to protect their country's irreplaceable cultural heritage. At the same time, we call on United States and European law enforcement agencies to be on the alert over the next several months for the possible appearance of looted Egyptian antiquities at their borders.

American Anthropological Association
Contact: Virginia R. Dominguez, President
American Schools of Oriental Research
Contact: Professor Timothy Harrison, President
Archaeological Institute of America
Contact: Dr. Elizabeth Bartman, President
Cultural Heritage and Preservation Studies, Rutgers University
Contact: Archer St. Clair Harvey, Director
Lawyers' Committee for Cultural Heritage Preservation
Contact: Professor Patty Gerstenblith, President
Penn Cultural Heritage Center, University of Pennsylvania
Contact: Professor Richard Leventhal, Director
U.S. Committee of the Blue Shield
Contact: Corine Wegener, President

For more information, contact Peter Herdrich, CEO, Archaeological Institute of America.

To see the original letter, click here.