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Russia says decision on Scythian gold derails Hague’s ambition to become judicial capital

December 21, 2016, 18:03 UTC+3
The Amsterdam court’s ruling on Scythian gold in favor of Ukraine is illegitimate, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said
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© AP Photo/Peter Dejong

MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. The Amsterdam court’s ruling on Scythian gold in favor of Ukraine is unfair and illegitimate and frustrates the Dutch plans to ascertain the Netherlands as the world’s judicial capital, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Wednesday.

The Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman mentioned some acts by the Netherlands lately, including in the military and foreign policy sphere, "which stand in one line with numerous unfriendly verbal attacks by the Dutch authorities against Russia that are aimed at instigating anti-Russian hysteria in public consciousness," Zakharova said.

"The same logic is pursued in the unfair and illegitimate decision by the Amsterdam District Court on transferring the exhibits of the exhibition: ‘Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea’ to Ukraine and not Crimean museums, which to our mind frustrates the ambitions cherished by The Hague to ascertain itself as the world’s judicial capital," the spokeswoman said.

The uncertainty over the Scythian gold collection, which was put on view at the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam in February 2014 when Crimea was still part of Ukraine, arose after the peninsula had reunited with Russia in March 2014. Both Russia and Ukraine claimed their rights to the exhibits.

The collection of Scythian gold exhibits has been kept by the Amsterdam University archaeological museum (the Allard Pierson Museum) for more than two years. The Amsterdam University suspended the procedure of handing over the gold collection until the dispute was solved.

The Crimean museums have claimed their full right to the Scythian gold collection many times on the grounds that all the exhibits were found on Crimea’s territory and were stored in the peninsula’s museums.

On December 14, the Dutch court passed a ruling saying the collection should be handed to Ukraine. The judges said only sovereign countries could make claims to objects of cultural heritage.

 

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