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Iran Museum Houses Hitler Paintings

By Afshin Valinejad
Associated Press Writer
Monday, July 5, 1999

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) -- A Tehran museum holds two watercolor paintings by Adolf Hitler, given decades ago by the Fuhrer himself to the Iranian ambassador to Germany, the museum's curator said Monday.

Mohammad Reza Javaheri said the paintings show scenes of the Austrian capital of Vienna, where the 18-year-old Hitler applied to study art, but was rejected. The paintings are owned by the government foundation Bonyad Mostazafan, which runs the museum.

``Both paintings have been authenticated by two European experts,'' the official Islamic Republic News Agency quoted Javaheri as saying. The works have never been appraised, he said.

``The foundation does not intend to sell the paintings. They will remain in its collection,'' he said, according to the Dubai-monitored broadcast.

The paintings, both watercolors on paper, measure 23 1/2 inches by nearly 20 inches and show two mansion-like monuments of Vienna, sources told the Associated Press by telephone from Tehran, speaking on the customary condition of anonymity.

Hitler presented the paintings to Hassan Esfandiari, the Iranian ambassador to Germany during Hitler's rule, Javaheri said. Iran was sympathetic toward Germany during World War II.

The Bonyad Mostazafan gained the paintings after the 1979 Islamic revolution, when the clerical government seized billions of dollars in assets owned by the ousted shah and his cronies and gave them to the newly created foundation.


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