Swastika cover gets book seized

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The Independent Online
TWENTY-SIX copies of the best-selling thriller Fatherland, by the English author, Robert Harris, have been seized by police from a bookstall in Hamburg, writes Simon Midgley.

A passer-by had complained about the swastika and imperial eagle on the cover of the German language edition, which had a Swiss publisher.

According to national law, such symbols can only be used in historical documents and not for selling books in German. The English language version available for sale there, which also displays the symbols, is not thought to be affected.

The importer is planning to cover the symbols with black labels before returning them to the shop for sale.

Neither the author nor his English publishers, Hutchinson, was available for comment yesterday.