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Norwegian Police Announce Recovery of 2 Stolen Munch Paintings

Norwegian police say they have recovered the Edvard Munch masterpieces "The Scream" and "Madonna" stolen in a bold daylight raid from Oslo's Munch Museum two years ago.

Senior police official Iver Stensrud, who headed the investigation, says authorities recovered the art in a successful police action. He did not elaborate, but said the paintings are in better than expected condition and are believed to have been in Norway all along.

The police official said art experts must still examine the paintings, but expressed confidence that authorities had recovered the originals.

Two armed thieves burst into the Oslo museum in August 2004, ripped the paintings from the walls and escaped in a waiting car.

An Oslo court in May sentenced three men to terms of up to eight years in prison for their part in the robbery.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.