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Greece plans to sue for 288 billion euros for damages from the Nazi occupation

Athens believes that the occupation played an important role in slowing down the development of Greece as a modern state.

The Presidential Guard raises the Greek flag during a ceremony to mark the 74th anniversary of the liberation of Athens from the Nazi occupation on 12 October 2018. Photo: Yannis Kolesidis / EPA
The Presidential Guard raises the Greek flag during a ceremony to mark the 74th anniversary of the liberation of Athens from the Nazi occupation on 12 October 2018. Photo: Yannis Kolesidis / EPA

Less than two weeks after German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier used a state visit to apologize for the atrocities committed by his ancestors, Greece promised to resume the campaign to receive reparations for the damage done to the country by the Nazi government during World War II. The first attempt to get money was made in 2015.

This is a problem that is psychologically still unsolved, and as a government we are absolutely determined to raise it. It is obvious that Greece could not do this, being in the “rescue program”, receiving loans from the EU and Berlin. It would be completely contradictory.

Kostas Douzinas
Head of the Committee on the Protection and External Relations of the Greek Parliament.

It is expected that the government headed by the left will insist on its claims after the deputies discuss what was called the first comprehensive parliamentary inquiry into the damage caused to the country under Nazi occupation. Officials studied more than 400,000 pages of records obtained from American national archives and other records stored in Russia. According to a prepared report that was worked on for several years, due to the devastation in the period from 1941 to 1944, the country lost 288 billion euros. The deputies also calculated that the additional 11 billion euros owed the country for taking 473 million Reichsmarks from the Greek Central Bank in 1943, which were granted in the form of a compulsory loan.

Germany has never properly assumed historical responsibility for the mass destruction of the country. It was a complete disaster, which played a big role in delaying the development of our country as a modern European state.

Stelios Kuloglu
representative of the party SYRIZA in the European Parliament

The German government strongly rejects allegations that the country is a debtor of Greece or Poland, which also suffered greatly in wartime (it plans to receive a refund of $ 850 billion from Germany). Statements by the German government state that the issue was settled in 1960, when they paid Athens 115 million German marks, which is roughly equivalent to 231 million euros, and the final issue of reparations was closed after the unification of Germany in 1990.

Source: TheGuardian

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