Church apologizes for burial of neo-Nazi in Jewish grave in Germany

“The burial of a denialist at the grave of Max Friedlaender is a terrible mistake and a shocking incident in the light of our history”, commented Christian Staeblein, bishop in charge of the local community. “We absolutely have to see how we can rectify the situation.”

The man was buried last Friday in the Stahnsdorf cemetery (southwest Berlin) on the former grave of musician Max Friedlaender, who died in 1934. Max Friedlaender was a Protestant, of Jewish origin.

A first request for a grave in this place had been rejected by those in charge of the cemetery. Local religious authorities explained that they eventually accepted the request, adding that “the basic principle is that everyone has the right to an ultimate place to rest.”

But the choice of the old tomb of Max Friedlaender ultimately turned out to be a mistake, “a failure of our Church”, the religious authorities acknowledged.

According to the Justice Department of the Senate, Samuel Salzborn, the commissioner in charge of the fight against anti-Semitism in Berlin, has filed a complaint against X, because the rest of the dead has been violated.

Police had framed the neo-Nazi’s funeral, which was attended by dozens of supporters of denial, last Friday. According to a spokesperson for the police, a man who was under two arrest warrants was apprehended during an identity check. Police suspect him of belonging to the Citizen’s Movement for the Reich, which does not accept the legitimacy of the current German republic and claim that the German Reich from 1871 to 1945 is still in place.

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