Greece pulls back on offer to ship MLK Memorial sculpture from China, citing economic crisis

WASHINGTON (AP) — Greece's economic crisis is delaying the giant pieces of sculpture for the new Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington.

The Washington Post reports Greece had offered to transport the sculpture from China to the U.S. for free because of its admiration for King.

Now, the 159 huge stone blocks are waiting at a Chinese port, and Greek officials have told King memorial organizers they can't ship the blocks because of the economic crisis.

Project architect Ed Jackson Jr. says the memorial foundation budgeted money for the shipment, but a new shipper has not yet been lined up. Jackson wanted the stones shipped by May 1. Now he's hoping for them to arrive by the end of July.

C.H. Powell Co., a Baltimore-based shipping firm, says the job could cost $96,000 to $240,000.