Vienna, Oct 19 (IANS) The Austrian minister who announced on Monday that the home Adolf Hitler was born in would be demolished, appears to have backtracked somewhat, now saying the goal is merely to strip it of any recognition.
Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka told the cabinet on Tuesday that the house in Braunau am Inn in the state of Upper Austria should have its exterior changed such that it is “not recognisable”, Xinhua news agency reported.
Whether this can be defined as “demolition” or not is open for discussion, he contended.
An expert commission assembled for the purpose of deciding what to do with the building recommended it be used for either governmental administrative or charitable purposes, such as to provide services for disabled persons.
It did not recommend the building itself be torn down, but rather undergo a “far-reaching architectural transformation” to remove its recognition value and “symbolic power”.
Sobotka thanked the commission for its input, and reiterated his stance that the building should not be used by Neo-Nazis as a memorial site or gathering point, or in any way show a connection to the Nazi leader.
He said architectural firms would be able to put forth their proposals on redesigning the building, and that the final decision on its new purpose would be made together with the city of Braunau.