British bishop is on trial in a German court for disputing the number of Jews killed during the World War II, and denying the existence of Nazi gas-chambers.
In a 2008 interview at the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) seminary near Regensburg, Bishop Richard Williamson told a Swedish reporter that "only 200,000 to 300,000 Jews" had been killed by the Nazis, the Associated Press reported on Friday.
The Bishop was fined EUR 12,000 by a German court for his remarks, since denying the Holocaust is a crime in Austria and Germany.
After Williamson declined to pay the fine, the German court ordered him to stand trial.
Williamson's lawyer, Matthias Lossman, said that his client was told by the Swedish reporter that his comments would be broadcast only in Sweden, where analyzing and discussing Holocaust is not a criminal offense.
In a letter to Williamson, Father Christian Thouvenot, the Secretary General of SSPX, ordered the bishop not to appear in court, and to "stop communicating by Internet, be it by blog, forum or via his web page," according to the German daily newspaper Tagesspiegel, which obtained a copy of the letter.
The Pope has been strongly criticized for overturning the excommunication of Williamson and three other SSPX bishops.
British bishop on trial in Germany
German court fines British bishop for Holocaust denial | World news | The Guardian