Dutch museum to hold Crimean gold

August 20, 2014 - 12:06 PM
Netherlands Crimean Gold

FILE - In this April 4, 2014 file photo a spiraling torque from the second century A.D., is displayed as part of the exhibit called The Crimea - Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea, at Allard Pierson historical museum in Amsterdam. The museum says it sees no choice but to hold on to a number of highly valuable objects it borrowed from Ukranian museums for the time being, because it is unable to reconcile competing claims from museum. The museum borrowed the items from the museums before Russia annexed the Crimea, and it says returning them now to one side or the other would lead to legal claims. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)

AMSTERDAM (AP) — A Dutch historical museum that borrowed some of Crimea's most valuable historical treasures says it plans to hold onto them for the time being, due to fear of being sued if it returns them to Ukraine or Russia.

The Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam displayed the artifacts, including bronze swords, golden helmets and precious gems from four museums in Crimea in an exhibition that opened a month before Russia annexed the peninsula.

Both the Ukrainian government in Kiev and the Crimean museums are demanding the objects back.

With the exhibition closing this month, the museum said Wednesday it has no idea what to do with the treasures, after seeking advice from lawyers and the Dutch government.

The museum said that for now "the disputed objects will be safely stored."