Czechs, Poles continue to reject memorial for German war expellees

11th January 2008, Comments 1 comment

Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek and Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk continued to say 'no' to a memorial for German expellees.

Prague (dpa) - Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek and his Polish counterpart Prime Minister Donald Tusk continued to oppose the plans by the German government to set up a memorial for German expellees, the leaders told reporters.

Tusk said that he would oppose the German plan unless Poland obtains "satisfactory information from the German side that would change the existing philosophy pertaining to this topic, which is symbolized by the name of Ms Erika Steinbach (president of the Federation of German Expellees)."

The German government has committed itself to a "visible symbol" to mark the sufferings of up to 15 million ethnic Germans expelled from the then Czechoslovakia and Poland after World War II had ended.

The plan has met with vocal opposition in the two formerly communist Central European countries, whose politicians have said that the expulsion must be seen in its historical context.

The idea of a memorial, intended for Berlin, has been strongly pushed in Germany by Steinbach, president of the Federation of German Expellees (BdV) and a member of parliament for Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU), who publicly backed the plan in October.

1 Comment To This Article

  • babayaga posted:

    on 12th January 2008, 01:23:35 - Reply

    Every time you write about this subject, you state that the Germans were expelled from Polish territory ("from the then Czechoslovakia and Poland"). Is this merely a careless error or a conscious ommission?

    For your information, the borders between Germany and Poland were redrawn after WWII. Germany lost about a third of its territory, including most of what was once Prussia. Thus, Germans were expelled from German lands that are now Polish.

    Please get it right!