12 January, 2004
LONDON 12/01/2004 (ANA/L. Tsirigotakis)
The British public overwhelmingly supports the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece, according to a recent opinion poll conducted in the country and is expected to be officially released on Wednesday.
Some 80 per cent of those questioned support the return of the marbles, compared to 50 per cent only three years ago, ''The Sunday Telegraph'' and the ''Sunday Times'' reported.
Greek Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos also on Sunday said that he was particularly happy of the response of the British public, as expressed in this opinion poll, stressing that ''I am glad as minister of culture and personally as well, because the proposals we have stated to achieve the reunification of the Parthenon Marbles - in the form of a single exhibit in Athens, under the auspices of the Acropolis Museum and the British Museum, a branch of which we want to establish within the New Acropolis Museum - has met with such great acceptance by the British public opinion''.
He thanked those that worked hard to inform the British public of the initiative and for their support in the effort to reunify the elements of the Parthenon, an international cultural symbol.
It should also be noted that the Sunday Times' report also stressed that some 90 per cent of British museums' personnel supports the return of the marbles, as the opinion poll showed.
Source: Athens News Agency