Mein Kampf
Hitler's Mein Kampf has gone on sale in Germany for the first time since the Second World War Getty

Hitler's manifesto Mein Kampf has gone on sale in Germany for the first time since the Second World War.

The academic version of the volume by the Munich-based Institute for Contemporary History was published after the copyright of the German language original expired.

The new edition "sets out as far as possible Hitler's sources, which were deeply rooted in the German racist tradition of the late 19th century," said the Munich institute's director, Andreas Wirsching, as quoted by the Associated Press. "This edition exposes the false information spread by Hitler, his downright lies and his many half-truths, which aimed at a pure propaganda effect."

"At a time when the well-known formulae of far-right xenophobia are threatening to become socially acceptable again in Europe, it is necessary to research and critically present the appalling driving forces of National Socialism and its deadly racism," Wirsching said.

Hitler wrote the book while imprisoned following a failed 1923 coup. After the dictator's death at the end of the war, copyright passed to the Bavarian government, which blocked publication of the book.

But with 70 years having passed since the death of Hitler, the book has become public domain. Under anti-racism laws, only heavily annotated editions of the book can be published. Jewish groups have not objected to the republication of the book.

Josef Schuster, president of Germany's main Jewish group the Central Council of Jews said he hopes the critical edition will "contribute to debunking Hitler's inhuman ideology and counteracting anti-Semitism."