A church decides to permanently silence a bell dedicated to Adolf Hitler because it fears its use will turn the town into a magnet for neo-Nazis.
A church bell bearing a swastika and a dedication to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in the western German town of Herxheim am Berg will never toll again.
The Protestant church in possession of the bell announced the decision on Friday, fearing its use would turn the town into a magnet for neo-Nazis.
"The presbytery wants to prevent right-wing radical elements from feeling they are being spoken to, and also to keep the sound of Bell 3 becoming a nuisance for other people," according to a statement by the church.
The church has two other, non-Nazi-themed bells that it will continue to use.
The bell has been hanging since 1934 in the Protestant church. Its inscription reads, "Everything for the Fatherland - Adolf Hitler".
Last month, the local council voted unanimously to call in experts to decide what to do about the 240-kilogram community-owned bell.
The report is expected to deliver next steps, such as the bell's removal or the erection of an information board explaining the history of the bell.
The weeks-long debate about the bell brought about the resignation of former mayor Roland Becker, who got into hot water for appearing to defend the bell by telling reporters that not everything was bad during the Nazi regime.
Becker later said his remarks were misrepresented and that he wanted to "distance himself as much as possible" from any impression that he is a Nazi sympathiser. He nevertheless stepped down this week.