Photographers get a glimpse of three of the returning sandstone heads. Pic: Reuters/Chor Sokunthea
The Thai prime minister was in town today and he came loaded with goodies. Ancient
Khmer goodies, in the form of six large sandstone heads which were stolen from temples in Cambodia and have at last been returned to their rightful home. The heads were handed over at the Foreign Ministry today, a seventh was returned during a recent Asean meeting. The Thais have 43 items in total which have been identified as being of Khmer origin but Cambodia has to prove it before they get them back - which isn't as easy as it sounds. Thailand will keep them until they are convinced, in triplicate, probably in blood too, that Cambodia can provide indisputable provenance for the mainly stone pieces. The treasures were seized by the Thai authorities in 1999 and are from the 12th century. Examples of these demon and god heads can be found at the South Gate to Angkor Thom where most of the heads in residence today are copies.
Labels: Angkor Thom