Senegal Calls on France to Return Artwork

November 28, 2018

Senegal’s government has called for the return of the Senegalese artworks that are currently kept in museums across France.

This follows last week’s release of a report commissioned by France’s president, Emmanuel Macron.

In the report, African and French experts recommended that African artifacts that were taken without permission during the colonisation of sub-Saharan Africa be returned to their countries of origin.

Speaking at a presentation on Tuesday, 27 November in Dakar, Senegal’s culture minister, Abdou Latif Coulibaly, welcomed the report’s findings.

Coulibaly said: “We’ve read it and we consider [that] it’s a positive report – it’s legitimate and follows the course of history.”

The minister explained that the Senegalese government requested their French counterparts to return more than 100 artifacts, which could potentially be kept at the country’s new “cultural jewel”, the Museum of Black Civilisations.

Built with a $34.6 million donation from China, the Museum of Black Civilisations was originally proposed by Senegal’s late president, Leopold Sedar Senghor, to showcase the civilisations of black Africa.