Germany must pay WWII reparations to Greece, Poland: Former Greek president

‘We may be subjected to intimidation, but our claims are just,’ says Prokopios Pavlopoulos

Ahmet Gencturk  | 13.06.2023 - Update : 14.06.2023
Germany must pay WWII reparations to Greece, Poland: Former Greek president

By Ahmet Gencturk

ATHENS (AA) - Former Greek President Prokopios Pavlopoulos said Tuesday that Germany must pay World War II reparations to Greece and Poland, according to Polish media.

“Germany makes a lot of apologies for what it did during World War II, but that’s not enough. Berlin must pay reparations,” he said during the Post-Conflict Justice: Opening Legal Paths conference.

The event was organized by the Polish government and the European Public Law Organization (EPLO) and held in Athens, according to the state-run PAP news agency.

Noting that Greece and Poland officially demanded reparations from Germany for the war, Pavlopoulos, who served as president from 2015 to 2020, demanded that Berlin “take responsibility for its deeds.”

Arguing that it is possible that the issue of reparations could be brought before an international tribunal in the immediate future, he warned against German opposition on the matter.

“We are facing a powerful country. As we seek compensation for World War II, we may be subjected to intimidation, but we believe our claims are just,” said Pavlopoulos.

“German authorities are very sensitive about the rule of law, but when it comes to complying with the law themselves, they say it’s an issue that belongs in the past,” he said.

Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk said: “Poland suffered the greatest losses during World War II. Greece suffered enormous human and economic losses. It’s time to start speaking about war reparations. Victims deserve compensation from the aggressor.”

The conference brought together politicians, lawyers and academics from Poland, Greece, Italy and Serbia, apart from Mularczyk and Pavlopoulos.

Since 2015, various Greek politicians have claimed that Germany owes Greece €280 billion ($308 billion) in World War II reparations.

Germany has repeatedly argued that the reparation issue was resolved under previous international agreements.

Warsaw presented a comprehensive report last September detailing the material losses it suffered during the war along with a pledge to demand €1.3 trillion ($1.39 trillion) from Germany in reparations.

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