Greece facing ‘explosive’ situation with illegal digs

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A country of amazing archaeological wealth that is both a blessing and a curse, Greece has sought for decades to keep its antiquities out of the hands of smugglers.

But even as pressure grows on museums in Europe and the United States to return disputed objects to their countries of origin, police in Greece warn that the looting of ancient sites shows no sign of abating.

“It’s a complete free-for-all, the situation is very hard to control,” says George Gligoris, head of the Greek police force’s special department against antiquity smuggling.

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