Vietnamese Ambassador to Germany Doan Xuan Hung handed over 18 antiques from different cultural periods to the National Museum of Vietnamese History in Hanoi on August 9.
Officials examine the antiques at the hand-over ceremony (Photo: VNA)
The antiques, including 10 stone and eight bronze artifacts, were instruments of production and weapons of ancient people that were seized by Berlin police at the shop of a Vietnamese trader in late 2016.
There are five objects of the Dong Nai culture dating back 4,000-3,500 years, five of late New Stone Age and early Central Highland Metal Age, 4,000-3,500 years, and eight of Dong Son culture, 2,500-2,000 years.
From March 2017 to February 2018, the Vietnamese Embassy in Germany and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism worked with the Federal Foreign Office (the German foreign ministry) and relevant agencies to verify the origin of the objects and complete procedures to hand over the antiques to Vietnam.
On March 28, 2018, representatives from Berlin police and ministry of culture handed over the objects to the Vietnamese Embassy in Germany.
Ambassador Hung said the embassy had been preserving the antiques from March 2018 and now at the museum for research, preservation and display.
Germany has handed over illegally traded antiques to many countries. Vietnam was the first country in Southeast Asia to receive the ancient objects.
Director of the museum Nguyen Van Cuong said the handover of the antiques demonstrates the responsibility of Germany in implementing the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transport of Ownership of Cultural Property.
Earlier, the museum coordinated with Germany to organise exhibitions showcasing some 300 antiques at the archaeological museum in Westfalen State in Herne (from October 7, 2016 to February 26, 2017), the national archaeological museum in Chemnitz (from March 30 to August 20, 2017) and the Reiss-Engelhorn museum in Mannheim (from September 16, 2017 to January 7, 2018).
The exhibitions aim to help international friends, including Germans, understand traditional Vietnamese culture.VNA