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Banned flags of Nazi inspiration

Last modified: 2024-06-22 by randy young
Keywords: nazi | neonazi | banned flags | law |
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Ban and/or prohibition in:
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Article 86a of the German penal code states:
  1. There is a charge of up to three years in prison or a financial fee for:
    1. publishing symbols of an organization hostile to the constitution, or using these symbols publicly in meetings or publications;
    2. importing, exporting using, publishing, distributing or producing items with these symbols domestically or internationally.
  2. symbols are flags, buttons, uniforms, slogans and forms of greetings. Included are variations that are extremely similar to the original ones;
  3. Excepted are the use of these symbols for public education, prevention of hostile actions against the constitution, the use in art, science, schooling, news reports, historical reports and the like.
Two important remarks:
  1. This is an unofficial, private translation of the German original (available at
  2. Not all of this matches my own opinion.
As far as I know, at the moment, this law applies to the swastika and its variations. There was a time in West Germany in the 1950s and 1960s, when the East German coat of arms and symbols of East German political organizations were banned in West Germany (of course the same applied to West German symbols in East Germany). I remember an incident in 1964, at some winter sports world cup in West Germany, when the West German police asked East German competitors to remove the East German flag from their outfits.
Volker Moerbitz Keith, 12 January 2001

Other sites:


The Nazi flag is not specifically banned in Israel. I guess that there was no need for it! But if it does happen, I'm sure that there are other laws that cover the case such as "offending the public sentiement." It should be noted that the swastika is often used here by vandalist protestors of all sorts. Arabs against Jews obviously, but also Jews against Jews. It was reported by the media that the word "Nazi" used sometimes by extreme orthodox Jews towards police when the latter try to control their demonstrations. It was also reported that some archaeologists' graves were desecrated with Nazi symbols by the same extreme religious.
[anon.s], 9 December 1997 and 14 July 1999


The swastika flag is banned in France by an explicit text in the anti-racist law.
Philippe Bondurand, 6 December 1997


In Italy it is forbidden to use fascist or Nazist symbols.
[anon], s.d.


The [Hungarian] penal code in its article 269 A mentions the protection of emblems. See and article 269 B at
Pascal Vagnat 11 February 1999

Article 269/B:

Law XLV, year 1993.

Modification of the law IV of the year 1978 in the Criminal Code

The 20th Century's extreme political ideals brought such dictatorships to power through forceful takeover and exclusive control to Europe and Hungary, which took no notice of human rights and led to the extermination of Hungary's citizens.

The parliament has decided to install the following law, where the interests of Hungary have been considered as opposed to these nations, organizations or movements whose usage of these symbols opens painful wounds.

1 section the Criminal Code's law IV of 1978 is the following section 269/B

Usage of Absolutist Symbols

269/B Section
  1. Whomever
    • a) distributes
    • b) uses very openly
    • c) exhibits in public
    the swastika, SS symbol, arrow cross, hammer-and-sickle, five-armed red star or representational symbols and does not commit any greater crime, will be charged and fined.
  2. Those in fault of the (1) paragraph who use the symbols for recognizational, educational, scientific, artistic or historical, i.e. the modern era's events, are not punishable by law.
  3. Those nations whose official symbols contain the aforementioned symbols are not subject to prosecution under the (1) and (2) paragraphs.
  4. The event at which these symbols are displayed must be dispersed.
translated by Georges G. Kovari III, 21 February 1999

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