BUCHAREST, Romania — Lawmakers in the European Parliament on Thursday adopted a non-binding resolution saying Russia should return gold and other valuable heritage items to Romania that were sent to Moscow during World War I for safekeeping, a Romanian lawmaker said.

During World War I, the kingdom of Romania sent by railroad 91.5 metric tons of gold coins and ingots to Moscow, along with jewels and cultural treasures such as works of art. In the war, Romania had sided with Russia, Britain and France, against Germany, the Austro-Hungarian and the Ottoman empires.

The gold was confiscated after the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia in 1917. In later years, efforts by Romania to recover the gold came to nothing. Some cultural items were returned by Soviet authorities in 1935 and 1956 — but not the gold.

In 2003, a joint commission was set up between Romania and Russia to improve bilateral relations, and also work on the issue of the gold.

On Thursday, the European Parliament passed the resolution proposed by Romanian lawmaker Eugen Tomac, with the backing of the National Bank of Romania, stipulating that Moscow should return the gold.

Tomac hailed it as a “historic vote” and "a matter of national dignity” in a post on Facebook. “Romania cannot and must not accept anything less than the return of 91.5 tons of gold and the entire Cultural Treasure,” he said.

Though there is little chance Romania will see the return of the gold, Tomac said it was “important not to give up.”

There was no immediate comment from Moscow.

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