Greece’s Hellenic Parliament voted Wednesday to demand Germany pay reparations for damages caused by the Nazi occupation of the country during World War II.
According to a Greek parliamentary committee on the topic, Germany’s occupation during the war cost Greece €269 billion, or $304 billion, as reported by Reuters.
Greek politicians, such as the conservative opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis, argued that reparations are “legally open and politically feasible,” according to Greek newspaper Ekathimerini.
Mitsotakis argues that in 1941, the Nazis forcefully took a loan from Greece’s central bank, which was used to finance “the cost of occupation,” as well as Germany’s military operations in Africa.
«The claim for German war reparations is a historical and moral debt for us» Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras @PrimeministerGR said, adding that it would help «build a better future with Germany». «It is our duty to give both people the chance to close this chapter» pic.twitter.com/1gmG4Pz0Zj
— Greece in Stockholm (@GreeceStockholm) April 18, 2019
Reparation talks occurred in 2016 but were tabled by the parliament. (RELATED: EU Parliament Calls For ‘Reparations For Crimes Against Humanity’ To Afro-Europeans)
Greece has been in a financial crisis since 2008. The EU gave Greece bailouts and emergency loans in 2010 totaling €289 billion. Unemployment reached 27.5 percent in 2013, and many worried that Greece’s economy would crash the eurozone, according to the BBC.
Even after the economic crash, the Greek economy seems to be showing improvements.
Germany, however, is not pleased with Greece’s push for war reparations.
“This position is that the question of German reparations has been conclusively settled in legal and political terms,” said Steffen Seibert, a government spokesperson in Berlin according to the Associated Press.
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said, “This time, we must not allow the issue to lie dormant. … This time, we will insist,” as reported by the AP.