From now on it will be established more quickly in the Netherlands who owned Nazi looted art.

The rules for that process have also been relaxed.

If it is plausible that the request comes from the original owner (or heirs), it will be dealt with immediately.

This was announced on Thursday by the Restitutions Committee.

This committee advises the Minister of Education, Culture and Science (OCW) on the return of cultural objects that owners have lost as a result of the Nazi regime.

Earlier this year it was announced that the Netherlands will again conduct structural research into art that was lost during the Second World War.

If the original owner is found, the heirs regain possession of the art.

If it is very likely that it is indeed the owner or his heirs, the request will be granted.

The chairman of the committee says that at the moment many requests still have to be processed.

It now sometimes takes up to three years to decide whether the objects will be returned.

Due to the relaxation, this must now be done within a year and a half.

In addition, the expertise center will be reinforced with additional researchers in order to be able to process requests more quickly.

If no rightful owner can be found, this so-called 'orphaned' art will be returned to the Jewish community.

In a conversation with the Restitutions Committee, outgoing culture minister Ingrid van Engelshoven says that "how this can be transferred in a beautiful way" is still being considered.

1.5 million euros for research into origin

In the meantime, the government, together with the museums, will further investigate how works of art actually entered the national collection and whether they can perhaps be returned to private individuals.

Van Engelshoven will allocate 1.5 million euros annually for this research from 2022.

All objects under the control of the State are now being examined for possible new indications of their origin.

In total there were 3,665 objects.

More than 450 of these have since been returned.

The restitution policy in the Netherlands was established twenty years ago.

As a result, the documentary

Roof Art & Restitution was

made, which premiered on Thursday and can be viewed via the website of the Restitutions Committee.

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