Justin Bieber criticized over guestbook note written to Anne Frank House in Amsterdam
Updated On: Apr 14 2013 04:41:39 PM EDT
Justin Bieber visited the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, and the museum says the Canadian pop star wrote in the guestbook that he hoped Frank "would have been a Belieber" if she had lived.
Museum spokeswoman Maatje Mostart confirmed Sunday that Bieber visited Friday evening.
"Belieber" is what Bieber fans call themselves. Anne Frank was a Jewish teenager who hid with her family in a small apartment above a warehouse during the Nazi occupation of World War II. Her family was caught and deported, and Anne died in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1945.
The diary she kept in hiding was recovered and published after the war, and has become the most widely read document to emerge from the Holocaust.
Mostart said Bieber called Friday to ask if he could visit, and the museum was happy to receive him.
Bieber's whole note read: "Truly inspiring to be able to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a Belieber."
The Anne Frank Museum wrote about the visit in posts to Twitter and its Facebook page, leading to a spate of criticism of Bieber for perceived insensitivity.
Mostart said the museum was happy to have received Bieber and didn't see anything offensive in his remarks. She said he called ahead and was given a guided tour.
Frank was 13 years old when she began keeping her diary in 1942. Like many teenage girls, she made a collage of the celebrities of her day -- movie stars, dancers, and royalty -- and kept it on her bedroom wall.
"Our little room looked very bare at first with nothing on the walls; but thanks to Daddy who had brought my film-star collection and picture postcards ... with the aid of a paste pot and brush, I have transformed the walls into one gigantic picture," she wrote on July 11, 1942, just days after going into hiding. "This makes it look much more cheerful."
Bieber is on a European tour. He performed in Arnhem, Netherlands, on Saturday night, and will next perform three nights in Oslo, Norway.