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Six Youths Arrested in Cemetery Desecration

Police in the town of Fulda in the federal state of Hesse have arrested six youths who they say desecrated the Jewish cemetery in the nearby town of Weyhers a week ago. The youths, aged 8 to 13, were questioned by the police and retumed to their homes.

Some 90 of the 200 tombstones in the cemetery were uprooted and at least 20 of the tombstones were completely or severely damaged. The six youths admitted responsibility for the incident, police said. At least two of the six participated in previous desecrations of the cemetery last year and again last summer.

According to the police, the youths were motivated by a “spirit of adventure” rather than by political motives and uprooted the tombstones in an apparent search for gold and jewels and other valuables.

There was no immediate reaction from the local Jewish community. But in similar cases in the past, Jewish spokesmen warned against minimizing such actions as “juvenile games” and pointed out that Christian cemeteries are not the targets of such atrocities.

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