Merkel hits out at pope over Holocaust bishop | world | Hindustan Times
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Merkel hits out at pope over Holocaust bishop

German Chancellor Angela Merkel hit out at the pope today over the rehabilitation of a bishop who has denied the Holocaust took place, calling for further "clarifications."

world Updated: Feb 04, 2009 01:20 IST

German Chancellor Angela Merkel hit out at the pope today over the rehabilitation of a bishop who has denied the Holocaust took place, calling for further "clarifications."

"This should not be allowed to pass without consequences," Merkel told a news conference.

"This is not just a matter, in my opinion, for the Christian, Catholic and Jewish communities in Germany but the pope and the Vatican should clarify unambiguously that there can be no denial and that there must be positive relations with the Jewish community overall," she said.

"These clarifications have, in my opinion, not yet been sufficient."

Late last month, Pope Benedict XVI lifted the excommunication on British bishop Richard Williamson -- who on Swedish TV denied the existence of the gas chambers during World War II.

The move has led to heavy criticism worldwide, particularly in Benedict's native Germany among Jews and Catholics alike where denying that six million Jews were killed is illegal.