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Germany Still Owes Us for War Damage: Polish President

Greece may also demand more compensation for World War II devastation.

30 October 2018

Germany never fully compensated Poland for the devastation it caused during World War II, Polish President Andrzej Duda (pictured) told the Sunday edition of the German newspaper Bild.

 

"In my view, reparations payments are not a topic that's been dealt with," Duda said.

 

Poland received some reparations from Germany but renounced further claims in 1953. Still, the conservative ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) holds that Poland was forced into signing the document by the Soviet Union, according to The Local’s German edition.

 

After the fall of communism Germany made additional further payments of about 1.3 billion euros, Politico wrote recently.

 

Duda’s interview can be seen as establishing a talking point ahead of Polish-German talks this week, Deutsche Welle writes.

 

In June, PiS leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski also demanded that Germany compensate his country for the murder of millions and tremendous physical destruction during the war.

 

A high-level Polish delegation brought up the topic again during a visit to Germany last month, citing the reparations question as a serious bilateral problem, Politico says.

 

Poland’s parliamentary reparations committee will present a report early next year, DW reported in a separate story. The committee estimates Germany could owe Poland as much as 740 billion euros. But few believe Warsaw will make such a staggering demand.

 

“In private, German diplomats suggest that Poland understands there is little chance of securing cash reparations. Instead, Warsaw hopes to strong-arm Berlin into backing it in debates over the European Union budget or Brussels' threats to punish Poland for failing to uphold the rule of law,” The Local writes.

 

 

  • The Polish reparations committee is “working hand in hand” with its Greek counterpart as Athens also prepares to demand more compensation from Berlin, according to DW. The Greek committee has said that Germany should pay some 300 billion euros in reparations.

 

  • In a preliminary report released in August, the Polish committee said Germany was responsible for the deaths of more than 5 million Polish citizens during World War II and destruction of municipal real estate worth some 12 billion euros, most of that in Warsaw, the Polish news site The First News reported, citing the PAP agency.

 

  • Estonia and Latvia are considering a joint demand for reparations from Russia for the period of Soviet occupation, the Estonia Justice Ministry announced in August, according to TASS.

Compiled by Ky Krauthamer

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