Greece Demands EUR 279 B in WWII Reparations from Germany

Southeast Europe | April 7, 2015, Tuesday // 10:11|  views

Greek PM Alexis Tsipras earlier told Parliament that the cabinet was determined to pursue the goal of receiving billions in reparations from Germany. Photo by BGNES

Greek Deputy Finance Minister Dimitris Mardas said on Monday his country must be paid EUR 279 B in reparations over the occupation of its territory by Nazi Germany in World War Two.

This includes a forced loan of EUR 10.3 B that the Nazi occupying forces drew from Athens during the war. The rest consists mainly of compensations for relatives to victims to the occupation and for the damages that German troops committed on the infrastructure at the time, according to Der Spiegel weekly magazine's website.

A "reparations" committee was earlier launched at the request of Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, who pledged in mid-March to pursue the goal of receiving reparations owed by Berlin.

The request by Athens comes ahead of new talks over the extension of Greece's bailout program as the country is struggling to deliver on current payments to avoid a default. In end-March a committee was set up in Greece's Parliament to look into the circumstances under which the Southeastern European nation piled up its massive debt.

Though previous governments have also tabled similar demands, this is the first time a precise sum has been pointed by authorities.

Calculations were made by the country's national audit office, with a six-member expert panel allegedly having looked into 50 000 documents.

Berlin maintains it paid all its dues to Athens back in the 1960s.

The sum demanded by Greece roughly amounts to Germany's annual budget and to more than 8 percent of its gross domestic output.

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Tags: greece, Germany, Dimitris Mardas, Alexis Tsipras, World War Two, Nazi


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