ACROPOLIS MUSEUM PROMISED FOR 2006

Greece's long-delayed project to build a new Acropolis Museum that might one day host the Elgin, or Parthenon, Marbles will be finished in two years' time at a cost of 129 million euros, the government promised yesterday.

Deputy Culture Minister Petros Tatoulis told a press conference that the contract for construction of the ultra-modern new building at the foot of the ancient citadel was signed last Friday. The previous, Socialist government had sworn to have the building ready before the Athens Olympics, at a cost of 94 million euros. But nothing happened. Yesterday, Tatoulis accused his predecessors of having "never handled the matter seriously." If the museum is ever built, Athens hopes it will provide it with a strong argument in its bid for the return of the fifth-century BC Marbles from the British Museum, which, backed by the UK government, has refused to relinquish the sculptures.

Article reproduced from www.ekathimerini.com