Germany prevents rightist from travelling to Iran

26th January 2006, Comments 0 comments

26 January 2006, BERLIN - German authorities have prohibited foreign travel by a far-right-wing lawyer, Horst Mahler, amid fears that he may attend a Holocaust denial conference in Iran, an official confirmed Thursday.

26 January 2006

BERLIN - German authorities have prohibited foreign travel by a far-right-wing lawyer, Horst Mahler, amid fears that he may attend a Holocaust denial conference in Iran, an official confirmed Thursday.

Mahler, 70, who has been convicted in German courts of sedition and glorifying crime, defends neo-Nazis and has anti-Semitic views.

Hartmut Piecha, a spokesman for the mayor's office in the small town of Kleinmachnow outside Berlin, told Deutsche Presse-Agentur on Thursday that an order had been served to Mahler's wife invalidating Mahler's passport for six months with immediate effect.

During that time, Mahler can only travel to the so-called Schengen nations of Europe which admit German nationals without passports.

On a previous occasion, Mahler's passport was withdrawn to prevent him travelling to Auschwitz in Poland and denying there the genocide of the Jews.

The interior ministry of Brandenburg state, where Mahler lives, said the purpose this time was to prevent him participating in a conference announced by Tehran to back claims by that country's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that the Holocaust is a "fairy tale".

The state said it would gravely damage Germany's honour in the world if Mahler took part. It said German passport laws allowed the withdrawal of travel papers in case of danger to German interests.

It described Mahler as a "fanatical anti-Semite and falsifier of history".

Since 1945, the Nazis' murder of an estimated 6 million Jews has been exhaustively documented by prosecutors and historians from Germany and many other nations using eyewitness testimony, archival records and recovery of human remains.

A handful of pro-Nazi historians described as revisionists claim the Holocaust did not happen.

No date has been disclosed for the Tehran conference, according to the ministry.

In January a year ago, Mahler was sentenced in Berlin to nine months in prison for sedition, but has not entered jail because he is appealing.

Mahler, who in the 1970s supported far-left terrorism in Germany, has also been fined by German courts for praising the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States.

DPA

Subject: German news

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