Anne Frank tree cutting destroyed in Germany
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Anne Frank tree cutting destroyed in Germany

Police stumped as to identity of thieves or their motives

A sapling that came from the tree that stood outside the hiding place of Anne Frank in Amsterdam was cut down and stolen in Frankfurt, German police said.

The cutting was planted in 2008 outside Frankfurt’s Anne Frank School, named after the world-famous Jewish teenage diarist who was born in the German city in 1929 and murdered during the Holocaust in 1945 after her family was caught hiding in the Nazi-occupied Dutch capital, where they had moved to escape persecution in Germany.

Unidentified parties cut down the 8-foot tree that grew from the cutting some time between last week and Monday, according to a report Tuesday by the Dutch public broadcaster NOS. Police have no information or leads on the identity of the thieves or their motives, the report said.

“It was, obviously, more than just a tree for us,” a spokesperson for Frankfurt’s Anne Frank School told NOS. “We grew it with the help of a landscape architect and with the loving care of several classes.”

Anne Frank, age twelve, at her school desk in Amsterdam, 1941.
Anne Frank, age twelve, at her school desk in Amsterdam, 1941

The tree is not easily replaceable, as the original chestnut tree which stood outside Anne Frank’s hiding place, and which features in her diary, was cut down in 2010 following a storm.

Several cuttings from that tree are found around the world. The Center for Information and Documentation on Israel in The Hague, or CIDI, is in possession of a 13-foot tree that grew from a certified cutting of the original trunk.

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