Crack­down on tomb raiders, relic smug­gling

China Daily (USA) - - NEWS CAPSULE -

Po­lice in North China’s Shanxi province have seized over 5,000 his­tor­i­cal ar­ti­facts and ar­rested hun­dreds of peo­ple in a crack­down on tomb raid­ing and relic smug­gling this year.

The op­er­a­tion, which be­gan in March, has been the province’s largest po­lice op­er­a­tion of its kind. The po­lice cam­paign has helped re­trieve 5,730 his­tor­i­cal ar­ti­facts, 33 of them un­der na­tional-level cul­tural pro­tec­tion.

The num­ber of sus­pects ar­rested and the num­ber of relics re­trieved both sur­passed the to­tals be­tween 2013 and 2017, the provin­cial Bureau of Pub­lic Se­cu­rity said.

Tomb raid­ing has been a se­ri­ous prob­lem in Shanxi, which is home to 452 cul­tural relics sites un­der state-level pro­tec­tion and more than 28,000 an­cient ar­chi­tec­tural sites — the most in any provin­cial-level re­gion.

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