Iraq Museum told to register possessions anew

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The government has set up a commission to recount Iraq Museum possessions in the light of the standards applied in international museums, an Antiquities Department official said.

Abdulzahra Talaqani, the department’s information officer, said the registering of the possessions is part of measures by the government to check smuggling and trace items stolen from the museum.

Not only relics on display will be recounted, but also items kept in the museum’s stores and warehouses, Talaqani said.

Prior to the 2003-U.S. invasion, in the early days of which the museum was looted, Iraq boasted of having about 200,000 relics worthy of display.

The number of items kept in the museum cellars such as cuneiform tablets was much higher. These items were only displayed for scholars investigating and studying Mesopotamia.

The commission will include specialists and auditors who will oversee the inventories and registers.

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