Greetings to the third Panhellenic Congress on Holocausts and German Compensations

From 14 to 16 September 14 to 16, 2018 in Viannos/ Crete


Dear comrades and friends!

FIR is greeting all the guests, the veterans, the representatives of municipalities, Councils and Parliaments, the historians and scientists, the antifascists from different generations.

To mark the 75th anniversary of the crimes of Viannos Holocaust you held your important congress under the slogan “Unwavering struggle for Justice and Compensation!”

To commemorate this event is not only an historical remembrance, but also a today’s task. We are not allowed to forget what crimes the German fascism was responsible for in Greece. One can see the consequences of antisemitism and racism in power, the destruction policy against the civil society. It is a rare exception that the perpetrator was accused and sentenced to death by a Greek court. But the German governments were not willing to compensate this crime to the victims and their families.

That is, why FIR is – since long time – on the side of all Greek organizations and social initiatives they stands for the fair and substantiated claims of the Greek people for reparations owed by the Federal Republic of Germany due to the forced occupation loan and damage caused in Greece by Nazi occupying forces during the Second World War. Until today, the German governments are not willing to solve this open problem. With an onetime payment of an insignificant amount of 115 million DM according to the Bonn Convention of March 18, 1960 the German state tried to satisfy the claim.

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But the outstanding payment is much higher as international experts, also from Germany, listed several times:

“The forced occupation loan – robbery imposed on occupied Greece with the agreement of 03/14/1942, which amounted to 3.5 billion US $ in the purchasing value of 1938.

Demands for war reparations – compensation for the damage caused by the German occupation troops in the financial infrastructure and the complete destruction of the country’s economy, the grabbing and looting of national wealth and the damage to individuals. The “Conference of the Allies” in Paris (December 1945 – January 1946) recognized the amount of 7.181 billion US dollars for Greece, in the purchasing value of 1938.

Claims for compensation of victims of crimes of the Nazi occupying forces, of hostages and their forced labor in Nazi camps and factories of German monopolies.

The return of priceless archaeological treasures of our cultural heritage looted by the German occupying forces.”

This was a balance presented to the European Parliament in 2014 – and nobody denied!

FIR supports the Greek requests in this case and calls the German government not to block serious negotiations anymore. German reparations for Greek people are still missing!

But it is not only the money. “Justice and Compensation” mean also to recognize the Greek resistance as an important part of the liberation movement of Europe against the fascist occupation. The ELAS and all parts of the Greek resistance are a value part of the Anti-Hitler-Coalition. And nobody can forget this merit for the history of our continent.

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FIR congratulates all Greek antifascists and the friends of all over the world they support this task.

FIR calls the German government to end the blockade and to come to a serious solution for the compensation. It is very unacceptable to wait again 25 years – so also the grandchildren of the victims will not be any more with us.

Dr. Ulrich Schneider
General Secretary of FIR