Austria returns remains of S.African indigenous people

Apr 17, 2012

Austria will return to South Africa the remains of two indigenous people dug up and brought to Europe over a century ago for racial research, the authorities of both countries have announced.

The remains of Klaas and Trooi Pienaar, members of the San of South Africa, were illegally removed from their grave in 1909 shortly after their death by a team led by Austrian and ethnographer Rudolf Poech, despite protests by the local population.

They were to be part of his research at the Austrian Academy of Science.

Following lengthy negotiations, the remains will be flown back to South Africa this week to be buried, a joint statement by the embassy, the Austrian foreign ministry and the Academy of Science said.

On Tuesday, a South African delegation was in Vienna to attend a traditional cleansing ritual before an official restitution ceremony at the embassy on Thursday.

The remains are to be buried in the Northern Cape province.

Explore further: Subsurface structures discovered at prehistoric archaeological site

Related Stories

Subsea cable to double S.Africa Internet capacity

Apr 19, 2011

A new undersea telecommunications cable has landed in South Africa, investors announced Tuesday, saying the link would double the broadband capacity of the continent's largest economy.

South Africa unveils space agency

Dec 09, 2010

South Africa unveiled its national space agency on Thursday, aiming to become a leader in earth observation technology across the continent in 10 years, the minister of science and technology said.

Recommended for you

Study suggests that dinosaurs were warm-blooded

20 hours ago

Dinosaurs grew as fast as your average living mammal, according to a research paper published by Stony Brook University paleontologist Michael D'Emic, PhD. The paper, to published in Science on May 29, is ...

Fossil ancestor shows sharks have a bony past

21 hours ago

Most people know that sharks have a distinctive, all-cartilage skeleton, but now a fossil from Western Australia has revealed a surprise 'missing link' to an earlier, more bony form of the fish.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.