A Cairo teenager found a priceless statue of Pharaoh Akhenaton near a garbage bin after it had been stolen from the Egyptian Museum during anti-regime protests, Egypt’s antiquities chief said on Thursday.
The museum’s world renowned collection was burgled and several artefacts went missing last month, including statues of King Tutankhamun and Pharaoh Akhenaton.
A 16-year-old protester found the sculpture near a rubbish bin in Tahrir Square, the focal point of the demonstrations which brought down president Hosni Mubarak, antiquities chief Zahi Hawass said.
He took the statue home, where his uncle Sabri Abdelrahman, a professor at the American University in Cairo, recognized the piece and returned it to authorities, Hawass said.
“The statue is one of the most beautiful statues of Akhenaton, which highlights the skill of Egyptian artists at the time,” said Egyptian Museum director Tarek al-Awadi.
The statue would be restored before going back on display in the museum.
Akhenaton was a ruler of the 13th Dynasty. Last year, Egypt announced that DNA tests had confirmed him to be the father of famed boy King Tutankhamun.
Nationwide protests erupted in Egypt on January 25, which led to the overthrow of Mubarak and left at least 365 dead and scores more injured or detained.
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Posted by: Shaimaa Ahmed