President Prokopis Pavlopoulos called for the UK and the British Museum to return the Parthenon Marbles to their rightful place, at a dinner he hosted in hounour of Prince Charles and the Dutchess of Cornwall at the Presidential Mansion last night.
Pavlopoulos cited Britain’s illustrious tradition in classicism and the bilateral cooperation in the area of classical art and history in arguing for the return of the sublime sculptures that were hacked off the Parthenon’s pediment by Lord Elgin.
Pavlopoulos said that Greece views the UK a valuable partner in the EU and indirectly expressed the hope that British authorities might reconsider Brexit.
The president said he expects continued cooperation with the UK on the migration issue.
Referring to the historic relations and common elements between Greece and Britain, including glorious naval traditions, Pavlopoulos said, “From the start of the Greek Revolution of 1821, a large Philhellenic movement developed in Britain, in which Lord Byron was an emblematic member, and gave his life for the struggle of the Greeks. Our countries were allies in the two World Wars of the 20th century. They mourned the many victims who defended humanity, freedom, and democracy,” he said.
Prince Charles and Greeks’ sacrifices
In his reply, Prince Charles underscored the sacrifices of the Greek people during the eight-year economic crisis and the courage with which Greeks faced the burden of the migration crisis.