'Fifth of German youth unaware of Auschwitz'

New poll by 'Stern' magazine finds 21 percent of German youth don't know Auschwitz was a death camp in Poland.

January 25, 2012 22:01
1 minute read.
Main railway building at Poland’s Birkenau camp

Auschwitz-Birkenau 311. (photo credit: Reuters)

One in five young Germans does not know that Auschwitz was a Nazi death camp, a new poll revealed Wednesday, just days before the international Holocaust memorial day.

While 90 percent of the 1,002 surveyed by the German weekly magazine, Stern,  said they were aware that Auschwitz was a concentration camp, 21% of those between 18-30 said they had never heard of the place.

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In addition, nearly a third of those questioned about the death camp - where more than 1,000,000 people were killed at the hands of the Nazi regime - were unaware that the camp was located in Poland, according to AFP.

The poll comes after the German government released on Monday the findings of a two-year inquiry into modern anti-Semitism in the Federal Republic, demonstrating that latent anti-Semitism affects one in every five Germans.

The 202-page study, titled "Anti-Semitism in Germany," covered a wide spectrum, including hatred of the Jewish state within the Left movement, as well as Islamic loathing of Israel and Jews, particularly by Iran's regime and the Turkish media.

Benjamin Weinthal contributed to this report.

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