New Iran sanctions are targeting Persian artifacts in U.S. museums and universities, making it easier for lawyers to seize and auction off priceless Persian antiquities. Send a letter below to tell your Senators to protect our cultural heritage!
A Senate committee voted yesterday to make it easier for individuals to seize and auction off priceless ancient Persian antiquities held by American museums and universities in order to collect court judgments against the Iranian government. Already, lawyers are in court trying to seize the Persepolis Tablets - priceless 2,500 year-old artifacts that provide a unique first-hand account of life in the Persian Empire under Darius the Great. If this proposal becomes law, the Persepolis Tablets are almost certain to be confiscated from the universities and museums and sold to the highest bidders.
The Persepolis Tablets are a part of our rich heritage that should continue to be shared at museums and universities, not auctioned off like cheap items on eBay.
This proposal by Senator Menendez (D-NJ) will soon be considered by the full Senate as part of its latest Iran sanctions bill - which builds on the broad Central Bank of Iran sanctions spearheaded by Senator Menendez just last December. This is perhaps one of the starkest examples yet of how broad sanctions punish ordinary Iranians and Iranian Americans, not the Iranian government.
With the Iranian people facing unprecedented repression at home and economic warfare from abroad, we must stand united against collective punishment and the looting of our very heritage.
The Iranian government has harmed many innocent lives, and its victims should receive just compensation. But we must be able to protect the rights of victims without attacking our Iranian heritage.
NIAC has led the Iranian-American community's efforts to protect the Tablets, fighting in the courts, the Congress, and even the White House to protect them. In order to permanently secure these and all other priceless Persian artifacts under threat, NIAC has called on Congress to change the law to protect all cultural artifacts held by American museums and universities so our heritage will never again come under attack.
Related Website: Persepolis Fortification Archive Project - The Oriental Institute
Related Article: Battle over Persepolis Fortification Archive: Achaemenid Administrative Archives - A.J. Cave
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