Federal Shadow Minister for the Arts, Tony Burke, has tabled an official motion in the Australian Parliament calling for the Parthenon Marbles to be returned to their rightful home in Greece.
The motion was seconded by Greek Australian Labor MPs, Maria Vamvakinou and Steve Georganas, and calls on the Australian Government to join the growing number of nations that are now supporting this repatriation campaign.
Speaking to The Greek Herald, Ms Vamvakinou says joining the campaign is of benefit not only to local Greeks, but to the wider Australian community as well.
“This motion reflects our long history of advocacy for the return of the Parthenon Marbles. Over the last 20 years, we’ve established civil society committees alongside federal parliamentary friendship groups advocating for their return,” Ms Vamvakinou says.
“The issue of the Parthenon Marbles is really one where culture, arts and politics meet. It’s important not only to Australia’s large Greek diaspora, but also carries particular significance among Philhellenes across society.
“We’ve seen its impact on cultural heritage and sense of identity play out not only from within the Greek community, but also through its influence on the increasingly growing voices also calling for the return of objects and human remains stolen from Australia.”
Australia has long advocated for the return of stolen objects and human remains from our country which are held overseas. It is in our national interest that we uphold that same principle on behalf of other nations as well.