The group who seized ruling over Afghanistan reportedly warned that if the treasure had been taken out of the country, it would consider that action treason against the state.
"We're looking into it, and we'll gather information to figure out what's going on," Tolo News quoted Ahmadullah Wasiq, deputy head of the Taliban interim cabinet's culture commission.
The items comprising the Bactrian gold date back roughly two millennia, RepublicWorld.com reported .
The items, discovered by archaeologists in the graves of wealthy northern Afghan nomads in the 1970s, reportedly show a variety of Persian and Greek influence.
Chief among these is an ornate gold crown.
The crown stands five inches tall, was forged out of hammered gold, and is adorned with leaves and a golden mountain goat.
The Bactrian treasure was discovered in the Tela Tapa or Hill of Gold area of Sheberghan province in northern Afghanistan, in the graves of six affluent nomads dating from the first century BC to the first century AD. More than 20,000 artefacts, including gold cupids, dolphins, gods, and dragons studded with semiprecious stones such as turquoise, carnelian, and lapis lazuli, were found in the graves of the Saka tribesmen from Central Asia or the Yuezhi from northwest China. Golden rings, coins, weapons, earrings, bracelets, necklaces, weapons, and crowns were among the items found.
The effect of the finding was compared by Viktor Sarianidi, a Moscow archaeologist who led the combined Soviet-Afghan team that excavated the burials, to the 1922 discovery of Tutankhamen's tomb. "Bactria's gold shocked the world of archaeology," said according to the Smithsonian Magazine. Nowhere in history have so many distinct things from so many different cultures—Chinese-inspired boot buckles, Roman coins, Siberian-style daggers—been unearthed together in situ, it added.
The 2,000-year-old antiques discovered with them display quite an unusual blend of aesthetic influences (from Persian to classical Greek), and a large number of valuable artefacts discovered startled archaeologists, especially the elaborate golden crown found in the sixth tomb, the report notes. The diadem, for example, is a five-inch-tall crown of hammered gold leaf that conveniently folds for travel, and a thumb-size gold figure of a mountain sheep is elegantly etched with curved horns and flaring nostrils, according to Smithsonian Magazine in 2009.
According to Sarianidi, the treasure was gathered by Yuezhi lords from China, who arrived in Bactria about the second century BC and later founded the Kushan Empire in India. Scythians from modern-day Iran, according to other scholars, buried the hoard. During the dig, Sarianidi and his team discovered a skull and skeleton surrounded by gold jewellery and ornaments. They were the bones of a woman in her late twenties or thirties, whom Sarianidi described as a nomadic princess.