They find the San José Galleon on the coast of Cartagena (Colombia)

They find the San José Galleon on the coast of Cartagena (Colombia)

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On November 27, the sonar of the Navy ship Malpelo detected what experts in underwater archeology call an anomaly. This alteration in the Caribbean seabed, in an area that had never been explored before, turned out to be the San José galleon, ship of the Spanish State sunk by cannon fire by British admiral Charles Wagner in 1708.

"We had no doubts when we saw the bronze cannons with dolphin carvings," said researcher Ernesto Montenegro, director of the Colombian Institute of Anthropology and History in charge of the expedition (ICANH)
On Friday, December 4, the discovery of one of the most important sites in the History of Archeology was announced on Twitter and in less than 24 hours a public statement was made in the city of Cartagena.

President Juan Manuel Santos, together with the Ministers of Culture, Defense and Foreign Affairs, was very satisfied with the finding: «Information is a matter of the State, therefore it is under the reserve of law, what is at stake obliges us to keep much of the investigation secret. '

The operation, developed by ICANH and the Navy together with a group of national and international scientists, has revealed more than 100 objects on the surface alone. Among the captured images, ceramic and glass vessels and jars, a sword hilt and tables have been observed that confirm that the galleon rests on one of its sides.. The place where the remains of the boat are found and the amount of material found has not been confirmed.

The approval of the Submerged Heritage Protection Law of 2013 has allowed the Government of Santos to form a public-private alliance that according to the head of Culture, Mariana Garcés, has allowed us to have the necessary resources for the first exploratory phase and those to come.

From now on, a phase of soil and depth study begins to continue the work and develop scientific research. President Santos has affirmed that the find is the heritage of all Colombians and has affirmed that a museum will be built in Cartagena to allow the heritage to remain in the city.

Possible claims.

The 2013 Law has been repeatedly cited for avoid any type of claims due to the possibility that Spain could request part of the treasure. The Colombian Government has also made no mention in the litigation that since the eighties has persecuted the galleon or the leading company, the American Sea Search, which since 1982 claimed to have located the remains, something denied by the Colombian Government, and since then has lost lawsuits in different organizations until in 2011 the United States Supreme Court agreed with the Colombian State.

Other issues are still pending, such as the fact that the 2013 Law allows the commercialization of part of the content found as payment to those companies or individuals who have participated in the investigation, as long as it does not exceed 50% of the material found.

The Governments of Spain and Colombia agreed on Monday to resolve the situation of the San José galleon through diplomatic channels. Those responsible for culture in Spain and Colombia have explored some possibilities, but have finally left the resolution of the conflict in the hands of representatives of Foreign Affairs. Both countries claim to have rights to the wreck.

The Government of Spain has launched a diplomatic and political offensive around the discovery of the galleon. The Minister of Culture, Íñigo Méndez de Vigo, has affirmed that Spain has rights over the San José. Both in Colombia and in Spain the debate is beginning to take on overtones of political controversy with nationalist overtones. The local Colombian press is already talking about a "legal battle" between the two countries.

Video: XI Conferencia. Segunda Parte. Invitado: Sea Search Armada. TODA LA VERDAD SOBRE EL GALEÓN SAN JOSÉ.


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