"Local bandits know there is a great market in stolen and looted artifacts, and in fact, the illegal antiquities trade is nearly lucrative as drug and human trafficking, and there's much, much less political will anywhere to stop it," said Hirst.
"One of the fine lines archaeologists walk in their day-to day-lives is 'who owns the past': why is a white guy excavating in India at all, when there are plenty of Indian archaeologists working there. And if you're an Hindu archaeologist, you need to be very careful excavating a Muslim site, and vice versa," said Hirst.
"The kind of battles we wage are not with a gun and whip or some stupid Nazi. Usually, our battles are in the courts of law where we are trying to prevent cultural heritage from being destroyed," said Parkinson.