Russian gains at the front. They stole the precious gold of the Scythians

  • The museum lost valuable exhibits, including Scythian gold from the 4th century BC
  • The theft was possible thanks to the collaboration of some residents cooperating with the Russians
  • The theft in Melitopol is one of the many cases of robbery by Putin’s troops
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The Russians who occupy the city stole exhibits from the Museum of National History in Melitopol, in the Zaporizhia region, including a collection of Scythian gold, the General Prosecutor’s Office of Ukraine announced on Tuesday. According to investigators, the theft took place in April, and the stolen collection of exhibits included, among others, gold from the 4th century BC, discovered by archaeologists in the 1950s.

Ukrainian media reported last month that the Russians had stolen the collection. Suspilne reported on April 29 that the museum staff and city authorities hid the exhibits in February, but the “collaborators” helped the Russians find them.

The Scythian gold collection, dating from the 4th century BC, is primarily of great historical importance. Coins and ornaments were found in 1954 in Melitopol, when a Scythian mound was accidentally unearthed. Until 2014, they were exhibited in Crimea. In February 2014, the exhibition “Crimea. Gold and the secrets of the Black Sea” was opened in Amsterdam, which presented valuable finds from mounds. Among the exhibits from the period of the VI-II century BC, which were not borrowed by Ukrainian museums so far, there were ornaments and ritual objects made of gold, allowing to learn more about the culture of the Scythians, Goths and Huns, who passed through the Crimean Peninsula, located at the junction of civilization, colonized in the 7th century BC by the Greeks. After Russia’s annexation of Crimea in March, there was a problem to whom the Netherlands should return exhibits from the collections of five museums: one in Kiev and four in Crimea, after the exhibition ended in August 2014. In 2016, a Dutch court ruled that the treasure belongs to the state, which deposited it, i.e. to Ukraine.

These events are told in the film “Skarby Krymu”, which will be shown during this year’s Millennium Docs Against Gravity 2022 Festival. A preview of the film can be found on the official website of the event, of which Onet is the media patron.

Russian troops in Ukraine use the scorched earth tactic. Little progress on the military front is compensated by robberies. They steal household items, money and even children’s toys. They also have no resistance to destroying places of culture and religious worship.