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Metropolitan Museum to Return Stolen Ancient Coffin to Egypt

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An ancient Egyptian coffin that belonged to a high-ranking priest is to be shipped back to Egypt after it was stolen and sold to New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art with fake import papers.

The gold coffin will return home by authorities investigating international antiquities trafficking, and is expected to be displayed at the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo, according to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

The coffin of Nedjemankh was recovered by the Manhattan District Attorney’s office from the Met who bought the golden coffin from a Paris Art dealer back in 2017, only to discover later that it has been stolen from Egypt in 2011.

Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., the district attorney, was joined by Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Hassan Shoukry and US Homeland Security Investigations Assistant Special Agent-in-Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh, during a press conference to ‘repatriate an extraordinary artifact to it’s country of origin’ on Wednesday.

The Egyptian-crafted coffin that dates back to the 150 and 50 B.C.E was stolen from Minya and then transported through the UAE all the way to Germany and then finally to France. Luckily enough, and even after all these years, the coffin is to be returned safely to where it belongs.

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Grand Egyptian Museum Granted Three ISO Certificates Reflecting Its Excellence

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Another reason to be proud of our Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM), as if we needed more reasons!

Major General Atef Moftah, General Supervisor of the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM), received on behalf of the museum two ISO certificates: a certificate of accreditation of international standards for environmental management systems (ISO 14001: 2015) and certification of the international standard specifications for the quality management systems (ISO9001: 2015).

File: The three ISO certificates received by GEM.

Engineer Mohamed Habib, General Manager of OSS Middle East and Dr. Tarek Rizk, consultant of OSS Middle East and witnessed by Dr. Hussein Kamal, were the ones to present the certificated in the presence of General Director of the GEM Conservation Center, Dr. Eissa Zidan, Director of Executive Affairs of GEM Conservation and Transportation, and Dr. Elshimaa Eid, Head of Health and Safety at GEM.

This brings the total of certificated that the museum has been awarded to three, as the museum obtained the ISO certificate for occupational safety and health last September.

It’s also worth mentioning that this makes the GEM the only museum regionally and internationally to obtain three ISO certificates in less than 60 days!

These certificates resemble the positive impact that the museum have on the area and its surroundings, it also positions the museum as a sustainable and environmental museum.

 

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Diving & Scuba Activities to Resume in Parts of South Sinai

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As of December, diving and scuba activities for yachts on cruises will resume in six nature reserve diving sites in South Sinai, according to a statement made by Egypt’s Ministry of Environment.

The diving sites include: the Temple, North Laguna, South Laguna, White Island, Electricity, and Map.

The decision by Egypt’s Environmental Affairs Agency follows the cessation of diving activities that lasted for nine months, in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

Egypt’s health ministry announced Wednesday that South Sinai, Minya, Suez and Ismailia have recently seen a drop in infection rates, unlike Cairo and Alexandria.

According to the statement, “These sites were chosen after carrying out a number of field studies and scientific surveys, and after ensuring that they are distinguished by all the appropriate environmental requirements for diving sites to achieve the enjoyment of those involved in diving activities,” quoting Minister of Environment Yasmine Fouad.

 

 

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43 Floating Hotels & Nile Cruises Obtain Health and Safety Certificates

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So far, a total number of 43 floating hotels and Nile Cruise ships have obtained the government mandated health and safety certificates. 

These hotels and ships have started the resumption of their trips in October and ever since, they have been obtaining the certificates that are approved by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, the Ministry of Health and Population and the Egyptian Hotels Association (EHA). 

According to a statement from the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, these floating hotels obtained the certificates for meeting the health and safety requirements set out by the Egyptian government and the World Health Organization (WHO).

The ministry’s inspection committees approved 26 floating hotels between Luxor and Aswan last week, including: Nile Dolphin Hotels; Solaris 1; Premium; Amo Boat; Abercrombie 2; Zaina; Medea; La Travita; Tosca; Beau Rivage 1; Château Lafayette; Esmeralda; Champollion 2; Abercrombie Nile Adventure; Crown Jewels; Royal; Regency Louvain; Miss World; Nile Plaza; Nile Shams; Emilio; Miss Beau Rivage 2; Nile Marquis; Blue Shadow; and Farah. In addition to these, the Nile Vision and River Boats in Cairo also received ministry approval to resume their trips.

The inspection committees will continue looking at the rest of Egypt’s floating hotels, the ones that submitted applications for the certificate.

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