27 Oct 2022 20:39

Chancellor Olaf Scholz met Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Athens on Thursday. Greek claims for reparations for damage caused by the German occupation in the Second World War were also discussed. Unlike Scholz, Mitsotakis described the topic as still relevant.

Greece insists on reparations for war crimes and damage caused by German occupying forces in World War II. The issue has still not been settled, said Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis after a meeting with Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Athens on Thursday. This applies above all to a forced loan that the Greek central bank had to grant the occupiers in 1942. At the same time, Mitsotakis emphasized: “However, that does not cloud our relations.”

According to calculations by the Greek Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank as well as a parliamentary committee, the claims are between 269 billion and 332 billion euros. Berlin has rejected such demands for years.

Greece was occupied by the German Wehrmacht between April 1941 and October 1944. This was preceded by the Italo-Greek War of 1940, after Greece rejected an ultimatum by Mussolini on the so-called Ochi Day (October 28, 1940). Greece was able to hold its own against the Italian invaders and even liberated parts of Albania. This and the anti-fascist resistance in Yugoslavia forced Hitler to order the Wehrmacht’s Balkan campaign. This, in turn, according to a widely held view among historians, delayed the start of the German invasion of the Soviet Union by several, possibly crucial, months.

After the defeat by Germany and the withdrawal of British troops from the island of Crete, the territory of Greece was divided between the occupying powers Germany, Italy and Bulgaria. The port city of Piraeus (while the neighboring capital Athens was occupied by the Italians), the western part of the island of Crete and central Macedonia with the second largest Greek city of Thessaloniki were part of the German occupation area.

Greece’s human losses are estimated at around 500,000. These include around 250,000 victims of the famine for which the occupying powers are responsible, up to 80,000 in massacres such as the mass murder of Kalavryta and 30,000 civilians murdered in several waves of terror and almost 60,000 Greek Jews murdered in death camps.

Scholz had (on Wednesday) before his visit to the newspaper Ta Nea said: “Legally and politically, the question of reparations is closed. I am very grateful that Greeks and Germans are united in friendship and partnership in Europe today.”

more on the subject – Poland trip: Warsaw receives Baerbock with a reparation claim of 1.3 trillion euros

rt de / dpa

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Source: RT

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J. A. Allen

Author, blogger, freelance writer. Hater of spiders. Drinker of wine. Mother of hellions.

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