Austria plans to bring down the birth home of former Nazi leader Adolf Hitler to prevent it from becoming a pilgrimage site for neo-Nazis, the European country’s Interior Ministry said on Monday.
The house is located in Braunau am Inn, a town on the border with Germany, and Austria had already ordered the compulsory purchase of the building.
The owner had repeatedly refused to sell the building. It was unclear whether she changed her mind or if the government acted on plans to dispossess her.
Many have recommended that the building be remodelled, and the Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka intends to follow their suggestion.
Sobotka said, “a thorough architectural remodelling is necessary to permanently prevent the recognition and the symbolism of the building.”
Austria has claimed for decades that it was its people that were the first victims of Nazism. It was annexed by Hitler’s Germany in 1938, and has constantly confronted its Nazi past.
Although many support the building demolition, others see it as a case of history being swept away without trace.