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French shop chain apologises over swastika money belts

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French supermarket chain Auchan admitted on Tuesday that it had sold military-style money belts bearing the Nazi swastika at its Polish stores in what it called an "oversight".

"Our 2018 product offerings did indeed include these money belts from a Polish manufacturer, though our chain wasn't aware of it," Auchan Poland spokeswoman Dorota Patejko told AFP.

"It was an oversight on our part, a situation that we regret," she said, adding that the group was currently checking stores nationwide and would recall any of the belts left in stock.

"Only one money belt with the Nazi symbol has been located so far. It's been pulled from shelves."

The Gazeta Krakowska regional daily on Monday reported the case of a woman who bought one of the belts in an Auchan store in the southern city of Krakow.

"It's sewn out of camouflage fabric and has various bits of text," the client said, adding that she only recently realised there was a swastika.

"I'm in shock. I've been walking around with a purse with a Nazi symbol for weeks," she said, quoted by the Gazeta Krakowska.

"I never would have thought a supermarket chain would sell something like this."

Poland was occupied by Nazi Germany in World War Two and its current laws forbid the reproducing of the Nazi swastika.

The propagation of Nazi ideology is punished by a fine or up to two years in prison.

French supermarket chain Auchan admitted on Tuesday that it had sold military-style money belts bearing the Nazi swastika at its Polish stores in what it called an “oversight”.

“Our 2018 product offerings did indeed include these money belts from a Polish manufacturer, though our chain wasn’t aware of it,” Auchan Poland spokeswoman Dorota Patejko told AFP.

“It was an oversight on our part, a situation that we regret,” she said, adding that the group was currently checking stores nationwide and would recall any of the belts left in stock.

“Only one money belt with the Nazi symbol has been located so far. It’s been pulled from shelves.”

The Gazeta Krakowska regional daily on Monday reported the case of a woman who bought one of the belts in an Auchan store in the southern city of Krakow.

“It’s sewn out of camouflage fabric and has various bits of text,” the client said, adding that she only recently realised there was a swastika.

“I’m in shock. I’ve been walking around with a purse with a Nazi symbol for weeks,” she said, quoted by the Gazeta Krakowska.

“I never would have thought a supermarket chain would sell something like this.”

Poland was occupied by Nazi Germany in World War Two and its current laws forbid the reproducing of the Nazi swastika.

The propagation of Nazi ideology is punished by a fine or up to two years in prison.

AFP
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With 2,400 staff representing 100 different nationalities, AFP covers the world as a leading global news agency. AFP provides fast, comprehensive and verified coverage of the issues affecting our daily lives.

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