18:09 14.12.2016

Amsterdam's court decision to return Scythian gold to Ukraine justified - Kremlin Museums director

Amsterdam's court decision to return Scythian gold to Ukraine justified - Kremlin Museums director

The decision of the court in Amsterdam on the 'Scythian gold' is justified because the objects belonged to Ukraine, Kremlin Museums director Yelena Gagarina told reporters on Wednesday.

"It is very important to understand that the entire museum collection is a property of the state, not a property of a certain museum or other cultural institution. In this case when the items were taken out of Ukraine and belonged to Ukraine as a state, I find this decision fully justified," the director said.

She said that all issues pertaining to belonging of museum items to a specific museum should be resolved after the items return to their owner.

"The provisions of international law which govern the international exhibition activity of the Kremlin Museums, like other museums, exist. The Russian Culture Ministry issues permission to bring any item abroad on the grounds of the state guarantees which are given by the host party," Gagarina said.

"If we do not receive such guarantees, no item from the museum collections leaves the territory of the Russian Federation," she said.

"I am confident that respect for international law norms and observance of them by all interested parties are what makes further cultural exchange between the countries possible," Gagarina said.

Earlier on Wednesday Amsterdam's court rendered a decision that the Scythian gold from the Crimean museums belongs to Ukraine and should be returned to Kyiv.

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