An iron gate that was stolen from Dachau concentration camp in southern Germany in 2014 has been found in a suburb of Bergen, Norway, officials believe.
The gate, which contains the phrase "Work Sets You Free," has been an often-photographed symbol of the camp, which held about 615,000 detainees before and during World War II.
German authorities believe the gate’s theft in November 2014 was an organized crime. A $10,000 reward was offered for information leading to the Dachau gate’s recovery, but the tip that led authorities to it was reportedly anonymous, CNN said.
The original Dachau gate was forged by inmates of the camp in 1933, but it was removed after the war and replaced by a replica in 1965 when a memorial was established. The theft in 2014 was thought to be an attempt to remove the crimes of the camp from memory and tarnish the memorial, director Gabriele Hammermann said, according to CNN.
The "Work Sets You Free" slogan was propaganda meant to make it seem like the camp was a "work and reeducation" camp instead of a concentration camp where many people died, according to the memorial, CNN reported.
Approximately 415,000 prisoners were reported to have died at the camp before it was liberated in 1945 as the war ended.
A replica of the gate was created and installed after the 2014 theft using photos from 1936 and more recent tourist photos.
An investigation is underway to confirm the discovery is the original replica gate stolen in 2014. The gate is expected to be returned to the memorial after the investigation is completed.
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