In the afternoon of August 9, 2018, the VNMH held a ceremony to receive 18 artifacts from the Embassy of Vietnam in Germany. These artifacts were seized by the Berlin Police Crime Prevention Agency at a Vietnamese merchant's shop in late 2016.
Ceremony’s panorama at VNMH
Attending the ceremony were Mr. Vuong Duy Bien, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism; Doan Xuan Hung, Ambassador Extraordinaire and Plenipotentiary of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam in Germany; Representatives of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism; the German Embassy in Vietnam; Dr. Nguyen Van Cuong, Director of the VNMH with the leaders of the Vietnam Cultural Heritage Association, museums, central monuments and news agencies, Central and Hanoi newspapers.
Signing Ceremony for handing over artifacts from the Embassy of Socialist Republic of Vietnam in Germany to VNMH
In 11 months (3/2017 - 2/2018), the Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam in Germany and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in cooperation with German Ministry of Foreign Affairs and related agencies verified the origin, provided the legal basis and completed procedures to return the artifacts to Vietnam.
Some Artifacts were handed over. Photo: Vuong Anh
18 artifacts include ten stone objects, eight bronze objects, ancient tools, and weapons. There are five artifacts in Dong Nai culture from 4000 - 3500 years ago; five artifacts in Later Neolithic Period from the beginning of the Metal Age in Tay Nguyen, 4000 - 3500 years ago; eight objects from the Dong Son culture, 2500-2000 years ago.
Ambassador Doan Xuan Hung giving speech at the ceremony
Giving a speech at the ceremony, Ambassador Doan Xuan Hung said: “The German Government has handed over illicit antiques to many countries in the world. In Southeast Asia, Vietnam is the first country. It not only encourages many lost artifacts to be repatriated, but also demonstrates the good cooperation between Vietnam and Germany.”
VNMH’s director- Dr. Nguyen Van Cuong giving speech at the ceremony
On the side of VNMH, Dr. Nguyen Van Cuong, Director, said: “This is a gesture of high responsibility from the Federal Republic of Germany to implement the UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transport of Ownership of Cultural Property. The Republic of Vietnam and the Federal Republic of Germany are members. This also complies with the law related to cultural heritage of the two countries. After receiving antiques collection, the VNMH will complete scientific procedures, store and preserve and exhibit it to promote its value and introduce to the public.
Recently, the VNMH cooperated with the Federal Republic of Germany to organize the exhibition of 300 valuable objects at three museums in Germany to help the people of Germany and international friends understand more about Vietnamese history and culture. After the exhibition in Germany, the collection is now on display at the VNMH.
News and Photos: Thu Nhuần – Nguyễn Hưng