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Netherlands: Scythian gold to be given to Ukraine rules Amsterdam court01:39

Netherlands: Scythian gold to be given to Ukraine rules Amsterdam court

Netherlands, Amsterdam
December 14, 2016 at 11:06 GMT +00:00 · Published

The District Court of Amsterdam announced that a collection of Scythian gold, originally brought to the Dutch capital from Crimea before the peninsula's reunification with Russia, should be given to Ukraine. The verdict was handed down Wednesday morning and involved 565 artifacts in total.

Court judge Mieke Dudoh van Heel stated: "The UNESCO Convention 1970 focuses on the protection of the cultural heritage of sovereign states" and that "neither Crimea, nor the Autonomous Republic of Crimea are sovereign states". She added that at the time the cultural goods were shipped to the Netherlands Crimea was "part of the sovereign state of Ukraine", concluding that the Crimean "belong to the heritage of Ukraine."

Four Crimean museums are seeking the return of the Scythian gold collection to the peninsula on the grounds that all artifacts were found on Crimean territory and originally stored in their museums. The collection is presently on display at the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam.

Ukraine stated that the artefacts belonged to a state and not a museum and should be returned to Kiev on grounds of a contract signed by Ukraine's National History Museum, the Allard Pierson Museum and the Dutch Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Prime Minister of the Crimean Republic Sergey Aksyonov had earlier stated that the fight for the Scythian gold would continue whatever the court's decision. The artefacts, which include jewellery, gems and swords, will remain in the Netherlands throughout any appeal process.

Netherlands: Scythian gold to be given to Ukraine rules Amsterdam court01:39
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The District Court of Amsterdam announced that a collection of Scythian gold, originally brought to the Dutch capital from Crimea before the peninsula's reunification with Russia, should be given to Ukraine. The verdict was handed down Wednesday morning and involved 565 artifacts in total.

Court judge Mieke Dudoh van Heel stated: "The UNESCO Convention 1970 focuses on the protection of the cultural heritage of sovereign states" and that "neither Crimea, nor the Autonomous Republic of Crimea are sovereign states". She added that at the time the cultural goods were shipped to the Netherlands Crimea was "part of the sovereign state of Ukraine", concluding that the Crimean "belong to the heritage of Ukraine."

Four Crimean museums are seeking the return of the Scythian gold collection to the peninsula on the grounds that all artifacts were found on Crimean territory and originally stored in their museums. The collection is presently on display at the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam.

Ukraine stated that the artefacts belonged to a state and not a museum and should be returned to Kiev on grounds of a contract signed by Ukraine's National History Museum, the Allard Pierson Museum and the Dutch Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Prime Minister of the Crimean Republic Sergey Aksyonov had earlier stated that the fight for the Scythian gold would continue whatever the court's decision. The artefacts, which include jewellery, gems and swords, will remain in the Netherlands throughout any appeal process.

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