“Blood Antiquities” of Africa: A Link between Illicit Trafficking of Cultural Property and Terrorism-Financing?
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In the light of recent years’ armed conflicts and the growing level of terrorist activity globally, the link between illicit trafficking of cultural property and terrorism constitutes a growing concern for war-torn regions as well as for the international community as a whole. Identified as a possible form of terrorism-financing in recent years, the illegal trade of artefacts contributes to the fuelling of the spiral of violence and by this, to the undermining of the identity of the targeted populations. Due to the effects of the Arab Spring swiping through several African countries resulting in a still-existing destabilisation, power vacuum and the spread of different terrorist groups, these countries are serving an especially timeous example from this point of view. By presenting some examples from North Africa and the Sahel region, the paper aims to give an initial insight into the issue as an increasingly important international security challenge.
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