Nazi images outlawed germany
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'Hitler' wine rails German minister
From correspondents in Berlin
GERMANY has protested to Italy over a winery that labels its bottles with portraits of Adolf Hitler, the Justice Ministry said Friday.
Justice Minister Brigitte Zypries recently wrote to her Italian counterpart to say the labels are "contemptible and tasteless" and asked him to see what could be done against them, spokeswoman Christiane Wirtz said.
The wine is available legally in Italy, where it can also be purchased on the Internet, Ms Wirtz said. Its sale is illegal in Germany, where products bearing images or slogans from the Nazi era are outlawed.
Still, Bavaria state said it was opening an investigation to see if any of the bottles had crossed the border.
Ms Zypries, in her letter to Italian Justice Minister Roberto Castelli, expressed hope that Italy would act as part of common European efforts to fight racism and xenophobia.
Germany's embassy in Rome has been protesting the bottles since 1997, with little success.
The so-called "Fuehrerwein" bottles, part of Alessandro Lunardelli's "historic line," features 14 different labels portraying Hitler with slogans like "Sieg Heil" and other Nazis.
Other labels in the same line include portraits of other infamous characters of history, such as Italy's former fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, and former Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin.
In a 2001 interview, Lunardelli said the labels were "a great marketing success".
This report appears on news.com.au.