The United States on Friday returned to Russia 21 historical documents, some hundreds of years old, that were stolen from the national archives in Moscow and St Petersburg more than a decade ago.

The documents, including decrees signed by the last Russian czar Nicholas II and 18th-century empress Catherine the Great, were handed over to Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) director John Morton in a ceremony at the Russian embassy in Washington.

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