The Federal Law is aimed at providing the legal and organisational procedures necessary for returning the Esterhazy book collection to Austria in accordance with Russian laws.
The Agreement was signed in Moscow on September 21, 2012.
The Agreement sets forth the procedures for returning books from the Esterhazy collection to Austria and establishes that once all the books are handed over to Austria, a final protocol will be signed, which will mean that all and any claims Austria might have against the Russian Federation in connection with the book collection have been settled once and for all.
Part of the Esterhazy book collection was taken from Austria to the USSR in 1945 by one of the Red Army units. The collection being returned to Austria includes some 1,000 unique 16–18 century books in theology, astronomy, history, philosophy and medical science in English, Arabic, Latin and German.