Żydzi: spalić zwłoki Priebke`go

Funeral of Nazi war criminal Erich Priebke is called off after clashes

Former SS captain remains unburied after his lawyer says he cancelled service because police stopped family entering church

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The funeral in Italy of Nazi war criminal Erich Priebke has been called off amid clashes outside the church between sympathisers and anti-fascist protesters.

Priebke’s lawyer, Paolo Giachini, said he had cancelled the service because police outside the church in Albano Laziale near Rome had stopped friends and relatives of Priebke entering the church. The Italian news agency Ansa reported that members of a far-right Italian political movement had been barred from entering by authorities.

Priebke, a former SS captain who died in Rome last Friday aged 100 while serving a life sentence for his role in the massacre of 335 Italians in 1944, had been denied a church funeral in the Italian capital by the Catholic church despite protests from his lawyer and family. But on Tuesday, the Society of Saint Pius X, which has split from the Vatican over its opposition to the modernisation of Catholic doctrine and its outreach to Jews, offered Priebke a funeral at its church in Albano Laziale.

The group gained notoriety in 2009 when a British member, Richard Williamson, denied the Holocaust had taken place, saying: “I believe there were no gas chambers.”

As the hearse containing Priebke’s remains tried to enter the church on Tuesday afternoon accompanied by a police escort, protesters kicked it, yelled “assassin” and tried to attack a priest. Riot police separated the crowd from a small group of rightwing extremists, some hooded, who gave the fascist salute. As the evening wore on, the opposing groups briefly clashed before police intervened.

Nicola Marini, the mayor of Albano Laziale, had tried to ban the coffin from entering the town for the funeral, which was taking place on the 70th anniversary of the Nazi roundup of Jews in Rome, but he was overruled by the local government prefect.

After living in Argentina for 50 years after the war, Priebke was given a life sentence in Italy in 1998 for his role in the 1944 massacre at the Ardeatine caves in Rome, a reprisal for the killing of 33 German soldiers by resistance fighters.

Given house arrest with permission to attend church, he outraged Jews in Rome, who would bump into him as he walked in a city park. Priebke admitted no guilt, insisting he had been following orders and, just before his death, claimed that the Holocaust was an invention.

After the Vatican denied him a funeral in Rome, the capital’s mayor also ruled out a burial in the capital. Argentina’s foreign minister said Priebke could not be buried in Argentina, and a spokesman for the council of Priebke’s home town, Hennigsdorf in Germany, said: “We don’t have to bury Priebke in Hennigsdorf and we will not do it.”

Mayor Marini said a burial there was also out of the question.

Cremation was the best solution, said Riccardo Pacifici, the president of Rome’s Jewish community. “Spreading his ashes, like they did to Adolf Eichmann, would stop his grave becoming a pilgrimage destination.”

After the cancelled funeral, Priebke’s coffin remained in Albano Laziale overnight.

2 Responses to Żydzi: spalić zwłoki Priebke`go

  1. KSC 17/10/2013 at 09:35 #

    By Naomi O’Leary

    ROME (Reuters) – The head of Rome’s Jewish community praised protesters who blocked the funeral of a convicted Nazi war criminal as Italy marked on Wednesday the 70th anniversary of the deportation of Jews from the Rome ghetto.

    Erich Priebke’s final resting place is now unclear after the protesters forced a suspension of his funeral on Tuesday in the Italian town of Albano Laziale. His body is lying at a military airport near Rome pending a decision from the authorities.

    The former German SS officer died aged 100 last week in Rome, where he had been serving a life sentence under house arrest for his role in the killing of 335 civilians in 1944 in caves near the capital, one of Italy’s worst wartime massacres.

    At a ceremony in Rome’s main synagogue, the head of Rome’s Jewish community drew loud applause as he lauded the citizens and mayor of Albano Laziale for resisting Priebke’s funeral.

    “For this we feel proud to be Romans,” the president of the Jewish Community of Rome, Riccardo Pacifici, said at the event to mark the anniversary of the Nazis’ rounding up of 1,000 Jews from Rome’s centuries-old ghetto and their deportation to Auschwitz. Only 16 of them survived.

    “I do not even want to say his (Priebke’s) name, not to profane this sacred place,” said the head of Union of Italian Jewish Communities, Renzo Gattegna.

    “He never repented of his crimes and repeated the most incredible arguments denying the Holocaust.”

    Italian lawmakers debated on Wednesday a bill to outlaw denial of the Holocaust, in which some six million Jews perished. Several other nations already have such a law.

    Italian President Giorgio Napolitano, who attended the ceremony wearing the traditional Jewish cap, the kippah, said the event showed “great solidarity… between Catholics, Muslims, Jews, believers and non-believers”.

    Priebke’s body was moved to the military airport after anti-fascist protesters clashed with neo-Nazis on Tuesday in Albano Laziale outside the Italian headquarters of the Catholic Society of St Pius (SSPX), which had organised the funeral.

    CHRISTIAN FUNERAL

    On Wednesday the SSPX, a fringe right-wing group which has strained ties with the Vatican, defended its decision to agree to hold the funeral for Priebke, saying a baptised Christian has the right to a proper burial “no matter what his sins”.

    “We hereby reiterate our rejection of all forms of anti-Semitism and racial hatred,” the Italian branch of SSPX said.

    Argentina, where Priebke lived after the war, has refused to accept the return of his body to be buried beside his wife.

    Rome’s mayor Ignazio Marino said his burial in the capital would be an “insult” and said he may seek help from the German government to find a solution.

    Priebke’s hometown in Germany has resisted a grave there, fearing it could become a neo-Nazi pilgrimage site.

    A German foreign ministry spokesman told a regular news briefing on Wednesday he knew of no laws preventing a German citizen who had died abroad being buried in Germany, adding such matters were usually for the family of the deceased to sort out.

    “It would be nice if Mr. Priebke’s remains could be laid to rest somewhere without it being used by anyone for political ends,” he added.

    Priebke was in charge of SS troops in March 1944 who executed civilians in the Ardeatine Caves in retaliation for the killings of 33 German soldiers by a partisan group.

    Priebke was deported from Argentina to Italy after he was interviewed on U.S. television and admitted his role in the massacre, which he said had been conducted against “terrorists”.

    He was sentenced to life imprisonment in Italy in 1998.

    Many Italians feel strongly he should not be buried here.

    “It’s right that he is sent out of Italy, he needs to be kicked out of Italy, he doesn’t deserve to be here, particularly in Rome, absolutely not,” said Rome resident Pamela Paiano

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