German rail attacked over proposed 'Anne Frank train'

Deutsche Bahn wants to use name of teenage diarist who was deported to Auschwitz by train


The Anne Frank House in Amsterdam has raised concerns about a German plan to name one of its high-speed trains after the teenage diarist.

Frank was deported with her family from the Netherlands to Auschwitz by train in 1944 and the museum said the naming evoked memories of wartime deportations.

“[It] is painful for the people who experienced these deportations, and causes fresh pain to those who still bear the consequences of those times within them,” it said, although it acknowledged that “initiatives such as this are usually taken with good intentions.”

German railway operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) appointed a jury that included two historians to name its fleet of new InterCityExpress trains after historical figures, and sought customers' suggestions.

Anne's name was one of 25 selected for a shortlisted.

But the move met criticism, with German MP Iris Eberl tweeting "naming a train after Anne Frank is callous".

The operator has since issued an apology, saying its intention was “in no way intended to damage the memory of Anne Frank”, adding: “Rather, the DB, conscious of its historical responsibility, decided to keep the name of Anne Frank alive.”

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