Germany rejects WWII Reparations, but Greece has a €162-billion argument
Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias took the Greek claim of World War II Reparation from Germany in his jacket pocket when he visited Berlin for talks with his counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Tuesday.
“In my inside pocket, I’ve got that part of the speech from the prime minister who addressed the issue (of reparations),” Kotzias said putting one hand into his jacket, during a joint press conference with Steinmaier.
Greek FM was immediately rebuked by German FM.
“We are firmly convinced that all reparations issues, including forced loans, are judicially settled once-and-for-all,” Steinmaier replied after having said that Berlin was fully aware of its political and moral responsibility for the “terrible events” in Greece between 1941 and 1944 when Nazi German troops occupied Greece
Germany owes Greece a debt
Nearly 70 years after the end of World War II, the question of reparations has lost legitimacy,” a German finance ministry spokesman said recently.
The issue of wartime reparation claims over Germany’s four-year occupation of Greece, which ruined the country financially and left thousands dead, has complicated relations between Athens and Berlin for decades.
Greece’s occupation by the Nazis from 1941 was one of the most bloody in Europe, with Hitler’s forces rampaging, pillaging and shooting, and encountering a nation that fiercely resisted., The AFP reminded on February 7 th, 2015
Although the document, which was approved by Greece among others, was not officially termed a peace treaty, for Berlin it effectively drew a line under possible future claims for war reparations.
Not so, though, for former resistance icon Manolis Glezos, who has been pressing for Germany to settle up for decades.
The issue has a “political and moral dimension”, says the nonagenarian who, at the age of 18, took down the Nazi flag from atop the Acropolis.