PARIS — France’s President Emmanuel Macron has condemned the desecration of a memorial to the Jewish children of Izieu, in eastern France, deported to Nazi camps in 1944.

In a statement Tuesday Macron denounced the “shameful and cowardly act that won’t remain unpunished.”

The plaque bearing the names of the victims — 44 children and 7 adults — was broken and removed from its base in a public garden in the city of Lyon.

On April 6, 1944, the Lyon Gestapo, headed by Klaus Barbie, searched the Children’s Home of Izieu and arrested the children and their teachers. Most of them died in gas chambers at Auschwitz. Only one adult survived.

Barbie was convicted in 1987 of crimes against humanity and later died in a French prison.

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