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Poland asks US Congress to help obtain WWII damages from Germany: deputy FM

10.01.2023 17:00
A Polish deputy foreign minister has said that Poland has asked the United States Congress for support in securing compensation from Germany for World War II. 
Polands Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk meets reporters in Warsaw on Tuesday, January 10, 2023.
Poland's Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk meets reporters in Warsaw on Tuesday, January 10, 2023.PAP/Albert Zawada

Arkadiusz Mularczyk made the announcement at a news conference in Warsaw on Tuesday, Polish state news agency PAP reported. 

The deputy foreign minister told the media: “I would like to announce another important step designed to bring the issue of compensation for World War II onto the international stage.”

He stated: “We are requesting the support of the US Congress, including the Chairman of the US Helsinki Commission, Senator Ben Cardin, to assist Poland in being compensated for the losses incurred as a result of World War II.”

Later in the day, Mularczyk said in a tweet: “Today I asked The Helsinki Commission Chairman, Senator Ben Cardin, for cooperation and support in obtaining compensation for Poland’s war losses, and for US Congress to take action to investigate asymmetry in the treatment of countries injured by Germany during WWII.”

At the news conference, Mularczyk stressed that Poland had not been compensated for the losses inflicted on the country by Nazi Germany during World War II.

He further said that the US “is a key country when it comes to the global order, when it comes to compliance with the international order, human rights, the rule of law and international justice.“ 

The deputy foreign minister went on to say: “For these reasons, we believe it is of crucial importance to brief the US Congress on the issue of compensation for World War II, and to notify the US lawmakers, especially the Helsinki Commission, which is concerned with compliance with the rule of law, democracy and human rights; in our view the Commission is an appropriate forum for discussion.” 

Poland’s push for WWII damages from Germany   

On September 1, Poland's government announced that the losses suffered by the country at the hands of Nazi Germany during World War II totalled PLN 6.22 trillion (EUR 1.3 trillion) and that it would demand compensation from Berlin.

On October 3, Polish Foreign Minister Zbgniew Rau signed a formal note to the government in Berlin, demanding compensation for losses Poland sustained during the war.

Mularczyk noted on Tuesday that Poland had already sent “more than 50 formal diplomatic notes to the countries of the European Union, the Council of Europe and NATO to present its case for claiming compensation from Germany for World War II.”

“Poland has also applied to enlist the support of the Council of Europe and the United Nations, as well as asking the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to help regain cultural treasures plundered from the country during World War II,” the deputy foreign minister added.

Germany’s response

Last week, Poland’s foreign ministry said in a statement that Germany had responded to Poland’s formal diplomatic note from October in which Warsaw called for more than PLN 6 trillion in compensation for World War II. 

The Polish foreign ministry stated: “According to the German government, the issue of reparations and compensation for war losses remains closed and the German government does not intend to enter into negotiations on the matter.”

Poland rejects Germany’s reply over WII damages

Mularczyk said at the time: “In our view, Germany should take systemic steps to implement the diplomatic note [sent by Poland in October]. I would also like to emphasise that we do not accept the German position, we reject it in its entirety as absolutely unjustified and incorrect.” 

Mularczyk also told reporters that Poland’s reply to the German note would be "issued soon and it should be brief.”


Source: PAP, tysol.pl