Dutch court needs more time to rule on Crimean treasures

An appeals court in Amsterdam says it needs more time to rule on the ownership of a valuable trove of historical artefacts loaned to a Dutch museum by four museums in Crimea shortly before the region's annexation by Russia

"It is now a question of deciding who has the strongest rights; either the Crimean museums claiming a right of operational management under Ukrainian law, or the Ukrainian State claiming ownership of the Crimean treasures," the court said.

The Dutch museum had borrowed the artifacts for an exhibition that opened a month before the annexation. It has kept them in storage pending resolution of the cultural tug-of-war and declined comment on the legal proceedings.

The court ruled that the Amsterdam museum was entitled to hold onto the artefacts "in view of the complex situation in Crimea."

Among the objects in the exhibition are a solid gold Scythian helmet from the 4th century B.C. and a golden neck ornament from the second century A.D. that each weigh more than a kilogram (two pounds).