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Norway to return thousands of easter island artifacts taken by explorer Thor Heyerdahl

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More than fifty years ago, the famous Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl took thousands of precious artifacts from Chile to easter island, but this week is the Scandinavian country agreed to send them home.

A contract was signed in the Chilean capital city of Santiago between the Culture of the Ministry and Heyerdahl’s son, in the name of Oslo’s Kon-Tiki museum.

“The repatriation is a fulfillment of my father the promise of the Rapa Nui authorities that the objects would be returned, after they have been analysed and published,” Thor Heyerdahl Jr., stated in the agreement signing.

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Among the collection of artifacts, human bones, and cut to pieces.

1947: the Norwegian ethnologist Thor Heyerdahl (1914 – 2002) and his balsa raft ‘KonTiki’ crossing the Pacific Ocean on his drifting expedition from Peru to Polynesia. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

Chile’s Minister of Culture Consuelo Valdes pointed out that it is a part of their mission to the support of the Rapa Nui people to “restore their cultural heritage’.

“Today, another step has been taken through this historic agreement with Norway, which will enable the return of valuable cultural and symbolic pieces,” he continued.

Of course, the mission is not over yet.

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The Norwegian anthropologist and explorer Thor Heyerdahl photographed with archaeological artefacts from easter island, 1957.
(Photo by ullstein bild/ullstein bild via Getty Images)

Chile is also insisting that the British Museum in London, give them back the spiritually important figure of the Hoa Hakanani – a basalt statue, carved by the island’s indigenous Rapa Nui people, and said to embody an important ancestor.

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Heyerdahl has garnered fame in 1947 for the maneuver on a small raft known as the Kon-Tiki and journey of almost 4,000 miles from Peru to Polynesia on a quest – albeit a successful one – to determine that the ancient South American cultures could have sailed and populated the South Pacific, the elimination of the idea that it was controlled by the Asians as most of the historians believed.

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