More Jewish memorials vandalized in eastern Germany

BERLIN: Memorials to Jews persecuted by the Nazis were vandalized in eastern Germany overnight, police said Tuesday, amid renewed concern about a neo-Nazi resurgence.

A swastika was painted on a Jewish memorial plaque and another on a stone set in the sidewalk in memory of a deported Jew, police in the eastern city of Cottbus said. Five similar stones around downtown were stolen.

Police said they had no leads on who was responsible.

Cottbus is in the eastern state where suspected neo-Nazis on Friday attacked a memorial to a synagogue burned down on Kristallnacht, the anti-Jewish pogrom of 1938.

The group scattered candles and tore up floral wreaths placed at the site of the former synagogue in Frankfurt an der Oder on the 68th anniversary of Kristallnacht.

Prosecutors are investigating nine people for alleged offenses including disturbing the peace of the dead and displaying banned Nazi symbols.

Jewish leaders warn that such incidents show that Germany’s neo-Nazi fringe is growing and becoming more violent.

Politicians have responded with pledges to step up efforts to counter neo-Nazi ideology, especially in the former communist east of the country.

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Religion News Blog posted this on Tuesday November 14, 2006.
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