ATHENS, June 23 (Xinhua) -- The Milos Municipal Authority addressed a public invitation to famous American pop singer Beyonce this week to visit the Aegean Sea island and see firsthand the land and waters where Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty and love in ancient Greek mythology, was "born".
The invitation is part of a wider campaign for the repatriation of the world famous marble statue Venus de Milo, which is on permanent display at the Louvre museum in Paris since 1821.
Aphrodite of Milo (better known as Venus de Milo) is one of the most famous Greek statues and representations of female beauty in art history.
The statue is named after the Greek island of Milos where it was discovered in 1820 by a local farmer. Within a few weeks it had reached France as a French naval officer, who was also an archaeologist, acknowledged its value and loaded it on a French warship.
Under similar circumstances many ancient Greek treasures have been taken to museums across Europe.
Citing historical data that there was no economic transaction made, but the transfer was made during war time forcefully, the islanders request Aphrodite's return and prepare her home. Currently visitors at the island's archaeological museum can only see a replica.
The authorities of the Milos came up with the idea to call Beyonce to back their efforts after she shot with her husband Jay-Z a video clip in the Louvre where the statue features prominently.
"The fact that even an internationally renowned artist such as Beyonce chose to be framed by world-class monuments strengthens their timeless value. Moreover, when Venus, in addition to a monument of the Greek cultural heritage, is also the symbol of Milos. A symbol, which remains in a state of hostage, deprived of its right of repatriation, where it belongs," read a press statement issued by the island's municipal authority on Friday.
With the motto "Take Aphrodite back home" the inhabitants of Milos have long raised their voice and together with thousands of friends and supporters of the island, have called on the global community to sensitize and frame their campaign for the repatriation of the statue.
A campaign to collect signatures is already in progress since 2017, while Milos' mayor Gerasimos Damoulakis has highlighted the issue in all the international forums in which the municipality has participated in recent years.