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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Tanzania rules out bringing back dinosaur
fossils preserved in Germany       

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- The Tanzanian government said Friday it was not considering bringing back its dinosaur fossils preserved in Germany, citing poor logistics.

“Bringing back the dinosaur fossils requires complicated logistics that the government of Tanzania doesn’t have,” Gaudence Milanzi, the East African nation’s Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, told a news conference in Arusha.

“Chances of returning the fossils are very slim at the moment. Instead, we will liaise with the Germans with a view of establishing a special museum in Lindi region for their upkeep,” Milanzi said shortly after seeing off the Tanzania delegation to Germany for the International Tourism Fair Berlin (ITB) slated next month.

He said the government did not have the capacity and technology required to preserve and display the remains for tourism purposes.

A number of Members of Parliament recently appealed to the Tanzanian government to pressure Germany to return the fossils so that Tanzanians could benefit from them through tourism earnings.

The fossils, collected during expeditions to Tendaguru in what was then German East Africa, include the Brachiosaur specimen on show at the Humboldt Museum in Berlin, Germany.

The Tendaguru beds as a fossil deposit were first discovered in 1906, when German pharmacist and mining engineer Bernhard Wilhelm Sattler, on his way to a mine south of the Mbemkuru River, noticed enormous bones weathering out of the path near the base of a hill.

The engineer is said to have sent a report of his discoveries that found its way to German paleontologist Eberhard Fraas who visited the site in 1907 and recovered two partial skeletons of enormous size.

           

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