German security guard arrested for Hitler salute in front of Israeli athletes

A German security guard was arrested for making a Hitler salute before a group of Israeli athletes visiting a memorial commemorating the 1972 Munich Olympic Games massacre, police confirmed on Wednesday.


The 16 athletes of the Israeli European Team Championships went to Munich Olympic Park on Tuesday evening when the prohibited move was made, police said in a statement.

“One of the four security guards present was observed at approximately 7:20 pm making a National Socialist gesture,” the statement said.

Police immediately detained the suspect, a 19-year-old from Berlin, and he was barred from participating in further European championship events.

The athletes themselves had not noticed the gesture, they said.

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The arrest comes at a delicate time, as Munich hosts the European Championships before the 50th anniversary of the Olympic Games massacre, in which 11 Israelis were killed.

On September 5, 1972, eight armed men broke into the Israeli team’s apartment in the Olympic village, killing two people and kidnapping nine Israelis, threatening of killing them unless 232 Palestinian prisoners were freed.

The West German police responded with a botched rescue operation in which the nine hostages were killed, as well as five of the eight hostage takers and a policeman.

The families of the killed people received €4.5 million in compensation but say it is not enough and vowed to boycott the upcoming commemorations of the tragedy.

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