- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 2, 2014

The infamous sign bearing the words “Arbeit Macht Frei” (“Work will set you free”) at the former Dachau concentration camp has been stolen, German police said on Sunday.

The theft of the historic wrought iron gate, measuring 75 by 37 inches, happened overnight, police said in a statement, the Agence France Presse reported.

The site has no surveillance system but is monitored by security guards, and the theft apparently took place between their rounds of the camp, AFP reported.

Police have appealed for any possible witnesses who noticed any suspicious people or vehicles to come forward.

The head of the foundation of memorial sites in the Bavaria region, Karl Freller, called the theft an “ignoble act,” AFP reported.

Gabriele Hammermann, director of the Dachau memorial site, condemned the theft, lamenting that the gate is “the central symbol for the prisoners’ ordeal,” The Telegraph reported.

Concentration camps have been targeted before by neo-Nazis and Holocaust deniers.

In 2009, the same “Work will set you free” sign was stolen from the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp in Poland, sparking a global outcry, AFP reported.

Swedish neo-Nazi Anders Hoegstroem was jailed for two-and-a-half years in connection with that theft.

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