Sale of Mexican Artifact Suspended in Austria

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The auction of a Pre-Columbian archaeological artifact, which was slated to go on the block at Vienna’s Zacke Gallery on Friday, March 11, was suspended this week thanks to the intervention of the Mexican government, the Austrian Embassy in Mexico announced on Thursday, March 10.

The item, a carved stone ballgame yoke presumably from the early central Veracruz culture (400 to 900 A,D.), was withdrawn from the gallery’s catalog in accordance with international law on the protection of archaeological, artistic and historical artifacts.

Upon being notified about the auction of the piece, Mexico’s ambassador to Austria, Luis Javier Campuzano Piña, contacted the gallery and appealed for the return of the item, which Mexico considers to be part of its cultural heritage.

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