Stephen Fry lends his support to Greek requests to return Parthenon marbles to Athens, stating that the London 2012 Olympics are an opportunity to “redress a great wrong,” in an interview he gave with the British newspaper The Guardian.
The famous actor points out that this gesture is “necessary” and in particular “a much-needed morale booster for a country mired in crisis.” Nearly 200 years after the sculptures were acquired by the British Museum, the call for their repatriation becomes much stronger by the voice of the British actor.
Greek campaigners – under Alexis Mantheakis, who chairs the International Parthenon Sculptures Action Committee – seeking the return of the Parthenon Marbles have renewed their efforts with an open letter imploring David Cameron to back the restitution of the classical carvings “to their historic home in Athens.”
“The Hellenic Republic today is in heart-rending turmoil; a humiliating sovereign debt crisis has brought Greece to the brink of absolute ruin. This proud, beautiful nation for which Byron laid down his life is in a condition much like the one for which he mourned when they were under the Ottoman yoke in the early 19th century,” the British actor wrote.
Stephen Fry considers the return of the Parthenon Marbles as “an act of friendship, atonement and an expression of faith in the future of the cradle of democracy.”
Global advocates of the antiquities’ repatriation have pledged to step up pressure on the British government ahead of the July 27 opening of the 2012 London Olympic Games.