31 March 2020 - 7 Nisan 5780 - ז' ניסן ה' אלפים תש"פ
Hitler’s birth house to become police station in Austria E-mail

After years of debate, the building where Nazi leader Adolf Hitler was born in Austria will be turned into a police station, officials have announced.

Interior Minister Wolfgang Peschorn said it would be an “unmistakable signal” that the property did not commemorate Nazism and prevent it from becoming a pligrimage site for neo-Nazis and sympathisers.

It was once a daycare centre for disabled people, but this ended when owner Gerlinde Pommer objected to plans to make it more wheelchairfriendly and then refused all government offers to buy it or carry out renovations. A plan to turn it into a centre for refugees in 2014 also came to nothing. The government took possession of the house in 2016 under a compulsory purchase order, for a price of 810,000 euros (US$897,000).

There has been widespread debate and disagreement in Austria over the fate of the building. Some have called for it to be torn down, while others argued it should be used for charity work or as a house of reconciliation. In his statement on 19 November, Peschorn said the house’s “future use by the police should send an unmistakable signal that this building will never again evoke the memory of National Socialism”.

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