Met Museum returns 10th-century Cambodian statues

Associated Press

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AP) — Two ancient stone statues that have been on display at New York's Metropolitan Museum for nearly 20 years are being returned to Cambodia.

Cambodian officials and Buddhist monks planned a welcome home ceremony for the 10th-century statues at the country's international airport on Tuesday.

Ministry of Culture official Hab Tuoch said the statues are important examples of Cambodian heritage that showed the prosperity of the Angkor era.

The statues are called "Kneeling Attendants." They come from the Koh Ker temple in Siem Reap province, which is home to the famed Angkor Wat temples.

Officials say they were stolen from the temple in the 1970s.

The Met said in May it was returning the statues after researchers discovered new evidence about how they were acquired.