Germany Allows Anti-Nazi Swastikas | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 15.03.2007
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Germany

Germany Allows Anti-Nazi Swastikas

A German court has ruled that a law banning Nazi symbols does not include crossed-out swastikas. The Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe ruled that images are a clear anti-Nazi message and are not a crime.

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Jürgen Kamm is now allowed to sell anti-Nazi items again

The verdict overruled a heavily criticized decision by a lower court in Stuttgart which had fined mail-order retailer Jürgen Kamm 3,600 euros ($4,750) for "selling unconstitutional symbols."

Kamm, whose business is called "Nix gut" (Nothing good), sells a range of anti-Nazi t-shirts, badges and stickers that shows the swastika clearly crossed out with a fat red line. In other designs, a figure throws a swastika in a trash can.

The Karlsruhe court found that Kamm had committed no crime in selling the items because they "clearly and unambiguously" carried an anti-Nazi message.

Thirty-two-year-old Kamm has said that he holds left-wing political views. The kind of anti-Nazi symbols he sells are displayed often by members of left-wing groups.

Under German law, performing a Hitler salute, displaying the swastika or wearing Nazi uniform or can carry the penalty of a fine or up to three years in prison.

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