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Poland mulls options for claiming WWII reparations from Germany

PR dla Zagranicy
Grzegorz Siwicki 04.10.2017 12:20
A potential Polish initiative to seek reparations from Germany for World War II is “being analysed very intensively,” Poland’s conservative leader has said.
Photo: NikolayFrolochkin/pixabay.com/CC0 Creative CommonsPhoto: NikolayFrolochkin/pixabay.com/CC0 Creative Commons

In an interview for the Gazeta Polska weekly, Jarosław Kaczyński said that giving the issue of reparations publicity was in its own right “a great tool for telling the world what World War II really looked like, what the Germans did to Poland, how they behaved, and who the victim was and who the executioner was."

Asked if his governing Law and Justice (PiS) party aimed to bring about an opening of negotiations with the German government over reparations, Kaczyński said the party was “not ruling out such an option,” but added without elaborating that “there is also another possibility – this could be done through US courts.”

For now, the issue of reparations is “at the level of parliament,” Kaczyński said, with a parliamentary team set up to estimate potential war reparations from Germany. However, he suggested that in the future a special parliamentary committee could be appointed to deal with the matter, “as was the case in Greece, for example.”

The leader of the parliamentary team, Arkadiusz Mularczyk, has said on Polish Radio that estimating the amount of potential compensation due to Poland was likely to take “from six months to a year.”

The team is scheduled to gather for its first official meeting when the country’s lower house convenes for a session 10-13 October.

A recent analysis by parliamentary experts concluded that the Polish government is entitled to demand that Germany pay reparations for the massive damage it inflicted on Poland in World War II.

Kaczyński has previously accused Germany of trying to “wriggle out” of paying Warsaw reparations.

Prime Minister Beata Szydło has said that Poland deserves reparations from Germany for the huge losses it caused in World War II, but indicated her government had not yet made a final decision on pressing claims.

German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel has reportedly rejected claims voiced in Poland that Berlin should pay reparations.

(gs/pk)

Source: IAR, PAP

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