France says it would be returning return dozens of works of art to Benin republic, more than 100 years after they were taken from the nation.
The decision comes after a report urged President Emmanuel Macron to return works taken “without consent” in the colonial period.
The items to be returned include statues taken by the French army as far back as 1892. The statutes taken from the Palaces of Abomey in the what was then known as the Kingdom of Dahomey, currently sit in the Quai Branly museum in Paris.
Now, following a report in France urging the government to return works taken “without consent” in the colonial period, authorities in Benin republic have greeted the news with applause, hailing president Emmanuel Macron’s decision as courageous. But in France, this has not been the case. The case has been met with controversy.
26 objects of art pillaged by French troops from King Behanzin’s palace in Abomey, Benin in 1892 are in particular now due for return as announced by President Macron.