Return of Parthenon Marbles highlighted in meeting between Pavlopoulos, human rights advocate Kerry Kennedy
President of the Hellenic Republic Prokopios Pavlopoulos on Tuesday received Kerry Kennedy, President of the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights advocacy organisation, and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Marianna Vardinoyannis at the presidential mansion.
“In the extremely turbulent world we live in, with heinous crimes such as those in New Zealand and the Netherlands, we, the Greeks and I personally, join our voice and forces with yours to defend, “urbi et orbi”, people, democracy and our culture against hideous acts that are tantamount to crimes against humanity,” Pavlopoulos said, praising the work done by the group to defend human rights.
He also thanked Kennedy for her steadfast support regarding the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece, assuring her that she is defending “an absolutely just case that concerns not just Greece but our culture itself, since the Parthenon is generally recognised as the cradle of our western civilisation.”
“This is the reason why it is a great cause of sorrow – and even frustration – that the authorities in Great Britain insist on covering up the crime of theft committed by Elgin and to tamper with historic truth, without the required respect for our civilisation and its symbols,” Pavlopoulos added.
Kennedy thanked the president for receiving her and referred to the cooperation between Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights and the Marianna V. Vardinoyannis Foundation, while expressing her support for Greece’s positions regarding the return of the Parthenon Marbles.
“It is easy for one to blame Lord Elgin but he has been gone for a while. This is an ongoing and perpetual crime, which is being perpetuated by the British government. It is hard for the specific democracy to continue to claim it is liberal while it continues to commit and perpetuate such a crime against Greece,” she said.
Vardinoyannis also highlighted Kennedy’s contribution in more than 40 countries and especially the fact that Kennedy had volunteered to talk about the return of the Marbles on her own initiative and to defend Greece’s positions for their return during her travels around the world.