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Germany Toughens Denial Laws

Germany’s lower house of Parliament this week passed a wide-ranging crime bill that includes provisions making it easier to prosecute those who profess that the Holocaust never took place.

The bill passed by the Bundestag also includes a provision increasing the maximum sentence to five years’ imprisonment for such an offense, known here as the “Auschwitz Lie.”

An initial proposal called for a three-year prison term, but politicians from the opposition Social Democratic Party pushed for the tougher sentence, which has widespread public support.

The bill’s passage took place after German lawmakers crafted a compromise Monday in a conference committee. The upper house of Parliament is expected to approve the bill.