Austrian government decides to confiscate Hitler's birth house

Austria will seize the house where Adolf Hitler was born from its private owner to prevent it from becoming an attraction for neo-Nazis, the government decided Tuesday.

The government has tried since 1984 to buy the property in Braunau near the German border, but the woman who owns it refused to sell.

Neo-Nazis have reportedly visited Braunau in past years to get a look at the house of Germany's former Nazi dictator.

It is not yet clear how the yellow three-storey house will be used.

"As it cannot be razed, it will be put to some sort of educational use," Vice Chancellor and Economic Minister Reinhold Mitterlehner said.

Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka wanted to demolish the building, but it is part of Braunau's old town, which is under heritage protection.

An Interior Ministry spokeswoman confirmed that the cabinet agreed on a bill to confiscate the house. The bill still requires a vote in parliament, where the governing coalition's majority is expected to pass it.

The Hitler family rented an apartment in the building for the first year after Adolf Hitler's birth in 1889. A senior Nazi party official bought it during World War II and opened it to the public.

After the war, the house was returned to it original owners. The Interior Ministry rented it and used it to house a workshop for disabled people.

However, the owner refused to adapt the building for disabled people and failed to agree with the government on a new use or on a sale.

Last update: Tue, 12/07/2016 - 17:23


More from Europe

Police suspect tear gas in London City airport "chemical incident"

Police said they suspected CS gas could have caused a "chemical incident" that led to a three-hour evacuation of ...

EU summit fails to break Belgian impasse over Canada trade deal

EU leaders ended two days of talks Friday with a failure to break a regional blockade to a landmark deal the bloc is...

Germany's economy "has many problems," Italian premier Renzi says

Germany has "many" economic problems, including a large trade surplus which violates European Union rules, the...

Tusk: EU leaders agree on need for better tools against cheap imports

EU leaders have made progress on ramping up the bloc's protection against unfairly cheap imports, European Council...

Catalonia to uphold bullfighting ban despite veto by top court

The Spanish region of Catalonia wants to uphold its ban on bullfighting despite the ban being overturned by the...