BERLIN — A German foundation established to track down cultural assets stolen by the Nazis says it’s starting a new project to investigate items taken in the post-war Soviet occupation zone and in communist East Germany.

The German Lost Art Foundation said two pilot projects launched Friday will be carried out with the help of researchers at the Dresden University of Technology and the agency overseeing the former East German Stasi secret police records.

A two-year project will focus on the Stasi’s clandestine 1962 operation “Aktion Licht” in which safes, safety deposit boxes, vaults and cellars locked since the end of World War II were opened and their contents taken.

A second six-month project seeks to inventory Stasi documents on expropriations of art and cultural property and produce a searchable electronic catalog.