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Germany ‘hiding cowardly’ over WWII compensation – Poland

Berlin’s reluctance to discuss reparations is creating a ‘schizophrenic situation’, Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk says

Germany acts in a “cowardly” refusing to discuss reparations to Warsaw for damage caused by Nazi occupation during World War II, Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk claimed.

“On the one hand, we have the absence of legal recourse on the part of the [Polish] victims, on the other hand, the unwillingness of the Germans to start talks on this subject”, Mularczyk complained in an interview with the PAP news agency on Wednesday.

east berlin “cowardly hidden behind his judicial immunity”, he added, insisting that “This is a schizophrenic situation on the part of Germany, which considers itself a democratic state that respects human rights.” 

Mularczyk, who visited Berlin earlier this week, said his trip was “an act of moral suasion on German politicians, who think that the question [of reparations] has been settled for a long time. 

Poland has been asking Germany to pay since last fall, when the country’s parliament voted to claim 6.2 trillion zlotys ($1.36 trillion) for damages suffered during World War II.

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However, Berlin insists the matter was resolved when Warsaw waived its right to restitutions in 1953 under an agreement with East Germany, and the matter was finally settled under a 1990 treaty on German reunification.

Germany’s ambassador to Poland, Thomas Bagger, reiterated Berlin’s position on Wednesday, telling Polish Radio 24 that “everything has already been said on the question of reparations”.

“This subject is a Pandora’s box, and it is better that this box remains intact”, Bagger asserted.

Last year, Polish President Andrzej Duda suggested that Russia, as a successor state to the USSR, also owed reparations to Warsaw.

The Soviet Army completed the liberation of Poland from the Nazis with local troops in 1945.

Duda’s idea was condemned by Moscow, with Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov calling it “unhealthy political extremism” and another sign from Warsaw “frenzied Russophobia.” 

LEARN MORE: Germany disrespects Poland in WWII – Warsaw

Peskov noted that Russia had grievances with Poland dating back to the 16th century, likely referring to the “Time of Troubles” (or Great Smuta), when Russia was briefly occupied by the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

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