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January 19, 2003



German town lists Hitler as 'honorary citizen'

A GERMAN town is defending its right to include Adolf Hitler on a recently published list of honorary citizens.

The town Bitterfeld in Sachsen-Anhalt presented its new homepage at the end of last month and Hitler's name is there among the names of former mayors and virtually unknown local scientists.

The entry gives Hitler's dates of birth and death as well as his 'profession', namely "Reich's Chancellor since 30 January 1933".

Bitterfeld mayor Werner Rauball from the Social Democrats says the town gave Hitler the honorary citizenship in 1933, as did many towns when the Fuhrer came into power.

He argues his name has to be included as the lists needs to be "historically complete", despite the fact that a ruling by town councillors had removed him from the list in 1990. Most other German cities had removed the Fuhrer's name right after the war.

Rauball says: "On our homepage we included the comment that Hitler's honorary citizenship was cancelled and this note should be enough."

But opposition politicians believe including the Fuhrer's name is a disgrace and defeats the point of having a website to draw tourists to the 17,000 strong industrial town.



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