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Lithuanian TV apologizes for Nazi gestures by actress

Associated Press logo Associated Press 1/11/2017 By JARI TANNER, Associated Press

TALLINN, Estonia (AP) — Lithuania's public television apologized Wednesday for a live show in which a popular actress made gestures to represent Adolf Hitler's moustache while raising her arm in a Nazi-style salute.

Virginija Buneviciute, a spokeswoman for Lithuanian National Radio and Television LRT, told The Associated Press the contract with the production company behind the popular "Guess the Melody" show was immediately terminated.

During Friday's contest, which actress Asta Baukute was about to win, she jumped off her seat when recognizing a melody by a Lithuanian composer of Jewish heritage. She then made the gestures and yelled "Jew, Jew, Jew" in Lithuanian.

Hours after the show was aired, LRT's deputy manager Rimvydas Paleckis said on the channel's Facebook page he was shocked, adding "this is in no way compatible with our values."

"The show is closed," he added.

Buneviciute said in an email: "As a public broadcaster, we stick to the policy of non-censorship, yet I can hardly imagine a situation (in which) she would be invited to one of our programs now."

Local media said Baukute, a former lawmaker with a populist party in Lithuania, later apologized and said she didn't want to hurt anyone. She was not immediately available for comments.

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