Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 28 August 2014

France to return looted paintings

"Miracle de la Saint Eloi" by Gaetano Gandolfi San Matteo della Decima (1734-1802) is one of the looted paintings (AP)

France is to hand back seven old master paintings that hang in state galleries taken from two Jewish families during the Second World War.

The oil works were destined to be displayed in a gallery Adolf Hitler had planned.

It ends years of struggle for the two families, whose claims were all validated by the French prime minister last year.

National Museums' Agency official Bruno Saunier said today: "This is incredibly rare. It's the largest number of paintings we've been able to give back to Jewish families in over a decade."

The paintings were by Alessandro Longhi, Sebastiano Ricci, Gaspare Diziani, Salavator Francesco Fontebasso, Gaetano Gandolfi, Francois-Charles Palko and Pieter Jansz van Asch.

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