The European Union is poised to introduce a unified penalty for Holocaust
denial. Cabinet ministers from the 27 E.U. member countries who will meet Thursday are expected
to back a proposal that would punish Holocaust denial with up to three years in
jail. The punishment would be handed out for inciting violence against ethnic,
religious or national groups.
One sticking point for the
proposed law is the effort by Poland and the Baltic states to include denial of “Stalinist crimes” as equal to Holocaust denial. The
other E.U. members are said not to accept that proposal.
Holocaust denial already is a crime in Germany and Austria. One
controversial aspect of the possible E.U.-wide ban is that
although it punishes violence against certain groups, it does not penalize
violence against religions.