Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Dentist's quest for Cleopatra's tomb

A Hong Kong dentist known for his love of science exploration is about to embark on a mission to find the lost tomb of doomed Egyptian lovers Cleopatra and Mark Antony.

Ng Tze-chuen, 58, said he would work with Kathleen Martinez, a lawyer turned archaeologist from the Dominican Republic, on delivering "the most important discovery of the 21st century".

They would visit Egypt together next month to meet Zahi Hawass, Egypt's controversial former minister of state for antiquities, Ng said.

Hawass was appointed to the ministerial post in January by Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak shortly before the latter stepped down in February. Hawass was in turn dismissed by the new government but reappointed; he resigned last month amid reports of widespread looting at Egypt's museums.

Ng said the changes in Hawass' official status would not affect their mission. "He still oversees all these projects, and we're going to see him next month to discuss the next stage of the search for the tombs. He is irreplaceable - nobody does it better than him," Ng said.

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