One of Iowa’s Congressman is sponsoring legislation which would crack down on those who try to import any artifacts stolen from Iraq. Congressman Jim Leach, a republican from Iowa City, says the U.S. must do everything it can to return what’s been stolen from Iraq’s museums. Leach’s bill, which he calls the Iraq Cultural Heritage Protection Act, is a response to the looting that occured in the country following U.S. military action against Saddam Husein’s regime. Leach says the U.S. should assist in the recovery and protection of what he calls “priceless pieces of culutural heritage.” Expert say the Iraq National Museum in Baghdad was the repository of archaeological treasures that date back to the time of Babylon. Leach says some “sophisticated raiders” may have participated in the looting of the museum, and his bill would force individuals caught in the U.S. with Iraqi artifacts to pay restition and return the items to the people of Iraq.
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