Thousands of Achaemenid-Era Clay Tablets Returned from US to Iran

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has returned to Tehran from New York after participating in the 78th session of the UN General Assembly, bringing with him thousands of historical clay tablets from the Achaemenid Empire.

“Thanks to proper follow-ups by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicraft Organization, the permanent mission of Iran to the United Nations in New York and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the tablets of the Achaemenid Empire, which were being kept in the United States and the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Chicago (CEAS) for 84 years were repatriated to Iran,” Raisi told reporters upon arrival at Tehran’s Mehrabad Airport.

“It is questionable why the tablets were in the possession of Americans. The scientists who worked on the tablets are of Iranian origin, and have been undertaking studies on them for more than 10 years.”

President Raisi announced that 3,500 clay tablets have been repatriated and will be displayed in Iranian museums.

Raisi emphasized that participation in the annual UN General Assembly provides an opportunity for interaction and clarification of states’ positions.

“The two important issues of amplification of Iran’s position as well as safeguarding the country’s interests and values were underscored during the event and separate meetings with heads of state,” he said.

“Those who forego values would occasionally serve others’ interests. Protection of values is therefore of paramount significance. Homage to the Holy Quran is an important issue as it constitutes our identity. Emphasis on family values is also of significance to us and human societies, and should be paid attention to by anyone.”

“We had twenty meetings and interviews with journalists, scholars, and politicians. During the meetings, Iran’s positions were made clear. The main focus of the meetings with the heads of more than 10 countries was to elaborate on Iran’s trade and economic relations with other countries as well as regional and extra-regional institutions,” Raisi said.

The Iranian president also highlighted Tehran’s readiness to cooperate and work with various countries and international organizations, particularly concerning political and economic ties.

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