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France’s Emmanuel Macron Pledges to Restore African Works Plundered During Colonization

The looting of cultural property in Africa during the colonization was a subject that had been mentioned in 2016. This topic has just resurfaced during the visit to France, Beninese President Patrice Talon.

Indeed, during his meeting on Monday, March 5 with his counterpart Emmanuel Macron, the Beninese President referred to the return of cultural property donated or looted during colonization.

At the end of this meeting, a study was entrusted to Bénédicte Savoy and Felwine Sarr to conduct an analysis on the return to African countries of works of art currently in France. The art historian, a member of the College de France, and the Senegalese writer and scholar will have until next November to give their opinion. In particular, they will have to examine the conditions under which these works can be repatriated and then protected in their countries of origin.


For the moment, French law does not allow this type of restitution in a definitive way, but Emmanuel Macron had promised last November in Ouagadougou to act in this direction. Patrice Talon claims since 2016 the return of these goods. A request he had formally addressed to France and which the previous government had rejected.

Four other announcements were made after the meeting between the two presidents. France will finance 17.5 million euros for a future hospital center in Abomey, Benin. EUR 58 million will be allocated to developing a sustainable city for the climate. The French Development Agency will finance 43 million euros for the redevelopment of the city of Ganvié. AFD will also support projects related to education and training. A partnership that has been welcomed by the two heads of state


Written by How Africa

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