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Judge representing non-interested side might decide fate of Skiff gold collection

August 22, 2014, 18:39 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The Crimean collection had been sent to the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam before the Ukrainian coup

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MOSCOW, August 22. /ITAR-TASS/. A museum collection of the gold of Skiff tribes ought to be brought back to Crimea, special envoy of the Russian president for international cooperation in culture Mikhail Shvydkoi told ITAR-TASS Friday. "A judge from a non-interested country might decide the fate of the collection," Shvydkoi said.

The Crimean collection had been sent to the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam before the Ukrainian coup and dramatic events which followed. The museum administration made a decision not to return the collection either to Ukraine or Crimea until a competent, non-interested judge passes an acceptable resolution or if the local authorities in Crimea reach an agreement on the collection with the Ukrainian administration.

"The Allard Pierson's decision is not a bad sign that the problem might be settled in favor of Crimea," Shvydkoi said. "It would have been much worse if they had decided to send the collection to Kiev," Shvydkoi said.

“According to the contract, in the event of a dispute over the collection it should be settled in a court under the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Ukraine, which arouses strong doubt as to the objectivity of the Ukrainian court. But, such court investigations might involve not only representatives from Russia or Ukraine, but from other countries as well, which offers an opportunity for a juridical maneuver," Shvydkoi said.

The exhibition titled "Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea" numbers 550 exhibits from museums in Kiev and Crimea.On display are jewelry, weapons, household utensils.

The exhibition displayed at the Amsterdam museum in February was to be closed in mid-May, but it wasn’t. The museum administration first said that the exhibition would remain at the Allard Pierson Museum till September, but later declared that the collection would stay on in the Netherlands until the conflicting sides reach an agreement, even if the problem will have to be settled in court.

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