Wesel (vāˈzəl) [key], city (1994 pop. 61,111), North Rhine–Westphalia, W Germany, on the Rhine River near the mouth of the Lippe River. It is a river port, a transshipment point, and an industrial center in the Ruhr district. Manufactures include machinery, lumber, tile, and metal products. First mentioned in the 8th cent., Wesel passed to the counts of Cleves in the early 13th cent. and in 1407 joined the Hanseatic League. The city came under the control of Brandenburg in 1666. Wesel was almost totally destroyed in World War II. In Mar., 1945, the Allies crossed the Rhine there in a major amphibious and airborne operation. Wesel has been reconstructed along modern lines. The city contains a Gothic church, the Willibrordikirche (1424–1506).
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