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Netherlands: Scythian gold case unites Crimeans, divides them from Ukraine - curator02:44

Netherlands: Scythian gold case unites Crimeans, divides them from Ukraine - curator

Netherlands, Amsterdam
December 14, 2016 at 13:39 GMT -00:00 · Published

The District Court of Amsterdam ruled 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, on Wednesday.

Judge Illya Bilderbeek stated: "the Crimean artefacts have to be returned to the State of Ukraine as they form part of the cultural heritage of the State of Ukraine," adding, "the State of Ukraine has to pay for all the costs that are involved with keeping the artefacts here."

First Deputy Minister of Culture of Ukraine Svetlana Fomenko supported the verdict, stressing: "we have no access to Crimea, we cannot protect our cultural heritage in Crimea. That is why we decided to transmit the right of operational management to another museum, [the] National Museum of History of Ukraine."

However Valentina Mordvintseva, a curator and archaeologist, said that "such things, like what happened and what are happening now, they make them [the people of Crimea] maybe even more united but divided from Ukraine. Such things they bring a cultural break." She added: "I think even for Ukraine it is not a good idea to initiate this court proceedings, to participate in this, as wanting to get it to Kiev."

Four Crimean museums are seeking the return of the Scythian gold collection to the peninsula on the grounds that all artefacts were found on Crimean territory and originally stored in their museums. The collection has been on display at the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam since 2014.

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

Netherlands: Scythian gold case unites Crimeans, divides them from Ukraine - curator02:44
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The District Court of Amsterdam ruled 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, on Wednesday.

Judge Illya Bilderbeek stated: "the Crimean artefacts have to be returned to the State of Ukraine as they form part of the cultural heritage of the State of Ukraine," adding, "the State of Ukraine has to pay for all the costs that are involved with keeping the artefacts here."

First Deputy Minister of Culture of Ukraine Svetlana Fomenko supported the verdict, stressing: "we have no access to Crimea, we cannot protect our cultural heritage in Crimea. That is why we decided to transmit the right of operational management to another museum, [the] National Museum of History of Ukraine."

However Valentina Mordvintseva, a curator and archaeologist, said that "such things, like what happened and what are happening now, they make them [the people of Crimea] maybe even more united but divided from Ukraine. Such things they bring a cultural break." She added: "I think even for Ukraine it is not a good idea to initiate this court proceedings, to participate in this, as wanting to get it to Kiev."

Four Crimean museums are seeking the return of the Scythian gold collection to the peninsula on the grounds that all artefacts were found on Crimean territory and originally stored in their museums. The collection has been on display at the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam since 2014.

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

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