Thursday, January 19, 2012

Greek Culture Minister rushes to deny Acropolis rental rumours

The source of the almost instantly viral rumour that the Greeks were considering renting out the Acropolis and other archaeological sites to help pay off the country's sovereign debt seems to have been a Conservative former Greek Minister — Gerasimos Giakoumatos.

‎"It's better to rent the Acropolis to private companies than to cut wages and pensions," Giakoumatos told the press. "Rent the Parthenon, the Delphi, the Temple of Apollo, Knossos and let the money flow into the public funds.” That recommendation, which had cultural heritage experts choking into their cornflakes, was endorsed by another Greek MP, Nea Dimokratia.

As Ton Cremers has just reported, Greek Minister of Culture and Tourism, Pavlos Yeroulanos, quickly took to his Twitter account to dispel claims that the Greek Government was considering such a course of action (@P_Yeroulanos).

Shame, as I was looking forward to renting the Temple of Hera at Olympia (above left) for a nice summer holiday with the kids. No roof or pool, but nice views of the surrounding countryside...

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