British Museum Chair George Osborne emphasised today that the ongoing diplomatic spat between British Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak and Greece’s Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis would not derail long-running negotiations regarding the future of the Parthenon Marbles.
“To my mind as chair of the British Museum it is all the more reason to press on with our efforts to try and reach an agreement with the Greeks,” Osborne said of the diplomatic spat.
According to Politico, Osborne, a senior Conservative-turned-British Museum Chair, claimed that Sunak’s controversial bilateral meeting cancellation a few days ago was inspired more by Mitsotakis’ meeting with the British Labor Leader than the integrity of the Parthenon Marbles.
“It’s because he had met [Labour leader] Keir Starmer the day before,” Osborne said.
Osborne further claimed that Sunak had sought to score “cheap points” over the Parthenon Marbles, motivated by resentment at authority “draining away” from No. 10 Downing Street as Labor leads in the UK polls.
The British Museum has been exploring a deal whereby the Parthenon Marbles spend part of their time in Athens and part of their time in London, with Greek treasures going to the UK museum in return.