Chinese tourists arrested for performing Nazi salute in Berlin


Police in Berlin said two Chinese tourists were arrested after giving Nazi salutes outside of the Reichstag, the historic building that hosts Germany's lower house of Parliament.

The salute related to Adolf Hitler and the Nazis is a symbol of hate speech in Germany.

While many Europeans will be aware of the anti-Nazi laws in Germany, that is unlikely to be the case for many foreign visitors.

The men were detained after police saw them allegedly doing the "Heil Hitler" gesture outside the German parliament in Berlin for their holiday photo album.

The two Chinese tourists were released later on Saturday after posting bail of $593 (500 euro) each according to police.

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The spokeswoman said the men could leave Germany during investigations into the incident, and if a fine was handed down, the bail money they had already paid was likely to cover it.

The salute - with the right arm straight and angled slightly up, palm down - was used as a greeting and a way of expressing devotion to Hitler under the Third Reich.

In 2011, police arrested a Canadian tourist for giving the hateful salute while taking pictures outside the Reichstag.

These men weren't the first tourists to try pulling off the Hitler salute in Germany.

For several years now, the government in Beijing has expressed growing concern over embarrassing behaviour by Chinese tourists travelling overseas, and has tried to persuade travellers to respect local laws and customs.