The Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland has said it will not allow its visitors to play the popular mobile game Pokémon Go, saying it is "disrespectful on many levels."
The message posted on social media follows concerns from curators at museums around the world. In the week since Pokémon Go was launched, visitors to monuments have been asked to stop playing the immersive game, particularly in the United States.
In a message posted on social media, the Auschwitz Memorial, which preserves the site of the former German Nazi Auschwitz concentration and extermination camp, said: "Do not allow playing #PokemonGO on the site of our Memorial and similar places. It's disrespectful on many levels," according to AP.
The message, posted on 12 July appears to have subsequently removed. However other cultural and heritage sites have also said patrons playing Pokémon Go would not be welcome.
The US Holocaust Memorial Museum told the Washington Post it was looking to be removed from the game. In a statement, communications director for the Holocaust museum Andrew Hollinger said playing the game inside a memorial to victims of the Nazi regime was "extremely inappropriate".
In one particularly inappropriate image circulated online, one user captured the moment a Koffing Pokemon appeared in the Museum's Helena Rubinstein Auditorium. The monster, which emits poisonous gas, was seen in the room alongside the testimony of survivors of Nazi concentration camps where millions of Jews died in gas chambers.
Hollinger was quoted as saying the museum is concerned about the Koffing appearance but there is a possibility it was a hoax. The original picture has been removed from the photo-sharing site imgur.
Pokémon Go has already revolutionised app gaming. A player customises their character and enters the world. Their avatar walks through a simple map depicting the roads, alleyways, parks, rivers and other open spaces of the real world and, as is tradition, the player gets to choose a starter Pokémon. Charmander, Squirtle and Bulbasaur appear around the player; tap one and you'll enter the capture phase.