Egypt's 'Indiana Jones' Zahi Hawass becomes Cairo's first UNWTO tourism ambassador
Renowned Egyptologist Zahi Hawass was appointed as a tourism ambassador for the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) on Saturday.
The former antiquities minister was appointed to the role at a ceremony held after the "Pharaohs' Golden Parade" event on Sunday. The event saw a procession of floats carry the mummified remains of 22 Egyptian kings and queens to a new resting place.
In taking up the role, Hawass becomes the first Egyptian appointed to the position and is charged with promoting international tourism on behalf of the UN body.
"This appointment is a great honor for me and my country, Egypt. It came after the royal show of mummies that dazzled the whole world ended," Hawass said in a statement on Sunday.
Hawass, famed for his Indiana Jones hat and TV specials on Egypt's ancient sites, was appointed as antiquities minister under late Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
During Egypt's 2011 'Arab Spring' protests, the veteran Egyptologist was accused of corruption and branded by protesters as "the Mubarak of Antiquities". He has denied the accusations.
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