The missing pieces of the "Gypsy Girl" mosaic, part of the group of Zeugma Mosaics that are integral to Turkey’s historical heritage, date back to 200 AD and were brought back to their homeland with Turkish Airlines’ TK6 Chicago-Istanbul flight.
On November 27, the flag carrier brought the pieces of the "Gypsy Girl" mosaic, which bear great historical significance for the civilizations that once inhabited Anatolia and Turkey and had been smuggled into the U.S., back to Turkey.
The missing pieces of the "Gypsy Girl" mosaic, which dates back to 200 AD and preserves its impressive look, were prepared for the flight based on the procedures practiced by Turkish Airlines for its special cargo operations. Weighing 1.3 tons in total, the missing pieces were wrapped in exclusively designed packaging materials and meticulously placed inside wooden crates to preserve their historical integrity. Since this shipment requires utmost care, no other cargo was admitted aboard the Boeing 777-300 ER passenger aircraft, which was assigned to bringing the missing pieces back to Istanbul.
Among the missing fragments that were smuggled from Gaziantep 47 years ago are 12 pieces including "Young Satyr", "Pan Mask", "Female Theater Mask", "Indian Peacock", "Maenad Mask", and "Bird with Plant Branch in its Beak". All the fragments are believed to belong to the decorative border enclosing the “Gypsy Girl.”
Brought back to Turkey thanks to the intensive six-year effort of the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Culture and Tourism in the United States, the missing pieces were taken by Turkish Airlines to Gaziantep in order to be displayed at the Zeugma Mosaic Museum. 12 pieces of the mosaic were opened for display with a ceremony attended by the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Culture and tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy.
For this special operation, Turkish Airlines became a sponsor for the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Culture and Tourism.