Inside Story

Should stolen African art be returned?

Institutions in the UK and France return artefacts to Nigeria and Benin following years-long campaigns.

European institutions, like the British Museum and the Louvre, are home to some of the world’s finest art.

But some of the treasures on display were stolen during colonial times.

Experts believe up to 90 percent of African cultural artefacts were taken from the continent.

This week, three European institutions gave back items stolen more than a century ago from Nigeria and Benin.

Campaigners who have fought for years to return those objects hope it is just the start.

But others believe the artefacts should remain in Europe.

So who is right?

Presenter: Mohammed Jamjoom


Sonita Alleyne – Master of Jesus College, Cambridge University

Chika Okeke-Agulu – Professor of African and African diaspora art history, Princeton University

Ed Cross – Curator, gallerist and owner of Ed Cross Fine Art