Stolen Crown Returns To Ethiopian Church After Twenty Years

Girmay Gebru/BBCCopyright: Girmay Gebru/BBC Tigray regional tourism head Birkty Gebremedhin (L) and a priest from the church welcome the crown home

After an ancient bronze sculpture was returned to Nigeria, Ethiopia becomes the next African country to have a stolen artefact returned.

An 18th Century ceremonial crown that resurfaced in the Netherlands after being taken from a church more than 20 years ago has returned to the church it came from.

Debre Medhanit Slase Cheleqo is the church in northern Ethiopia that had originally housed it.

It’s believed the crown was given to the church by feudal lord Ras Weldeselassie hundreds of years ago.

Hundreds flocked to catch a glimpse of the crown image via Girmay Gebru/BBC

The crown was returned to Ethiopia last month, following a campaign by Ethiopian Sirak Asfaw who discovered it in the suitcase of a visitor in 1998.

Church priests told BBC Tigrinya that they wanted the artefact back in its rightful place rather than being put in a museum in Addis Ababa.

The crown will now stay in Debre Medhanit Slase Cheleqo church via Girmay Gebru/BBC

Their wish was granted.

On Wednesday, hundreds of people from Mekelle and surrounding areas flocked to Alula Aba Nega International Airport to welcome the crown home.

Source: BBC

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