Man linked to vandalism of Anne Frank books

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IOL pic feb21 anne frank japan vandalism Associated Press Ripped copies of Anne Frank's Diary Of A Young Girl and related books are shown at Shinjuku City Library, in Tokyo, on February 21, 2014. File picture: Koji Ueda

Tokyo - A man nabbed for putting up a poster in a bookstore has hinted at his involvement in the vandalism of copies of The Diary Of Anne Frank and related books in libraries in Tokyo, news reports said on Thursday.

The man, in his 30s, was arrested on Friday in Tokyo after he was found to have entered a bookshop on February 22 and put up posters without permission, the Kyodo News agency reported, citing investigative sources.

Two copies of the diary were found vandalised at the bookstore on the previous day, Kyodo said.

Security camera footage showed the man was near the shelves, putting up posters, the report said.

The man’s statements have been ambiguous so far, and require more investigation, while the police are looking at whether he can be held criminally liable given his unstable behaviour, Kyodo said.

Since January, more than 300 copies of the diary and related books have been torn up at public libraries across the Japanese capital.

The incident prompted a US-based Jewish human rights group - The Simon Wiesenthal Centre - to call for an investigation.

Japanese government spokesman Yoshihide Suga described the damage to the books as “extremely regrettable and shameful”. - Sapa-dpa

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