German Nobel laureate to get snub in Gdansk

2nd October 2007, Comments 0 comments

2 October 2007, Warsaw (dpa) - Nobel Prize-winning German author Gunter Grass is likely to get the snub from local councilmen this week, when he arrives in Gdansk, Poland, for celebrations marking his 80th birthday, Polish Radio reported Monday. The ardent advocate of Polish-German reconciliation lost favour in Poland after admitting in August 2006 he had been a member of the Nazi Waffen SS during the Second World War. Grass had kept the fact secret for more than half a century. The news drew shock and har

2 October 2007

Warsaw (dpa) - Nobel Prize-winning German author Gunter Grass is likely to get the snub from local councilmen this week, when he arrives in Gdansk, Poland, for celebrations marking his 80th birthday, Polish Radio reported Monday.

The ardent advocate of Polish-German reconciliation lost favour in Poland after admitting in August 2006 he had been a member of the Nazi Waffen SS during the Second World War. Grass had kept the fact secret for more than half a century.

The news drew shock and harsh criticism in Poland, where he had been perceived by many as a moral authority.

Gdansk city councillors from Poland's governing conservative- nationalist Law and Justice party object to the two days of festivities organized by Gdansk authorities to mark the 80th birthday of the Nobel Prize-winning author who set his haunting The Tin Drum in the city.

"It's outrageous to spend so much money," PiS councillor Kazimierz Koralewski was quoted as saying by Polish Radio. "Grass doesn't enjoy the respect of Germans or of Polish people any more," he said.

Gunter Grass was born into a German family October 16, 1927 in what was then the Free City of Danzig and became the Polish Baltic Sea port of Gdansk after the Second World War.

He is due to arrive in Gdansk on Thursday for his 80th birthday festivities, which are to include an international literary conference at the University of Gdansk, the staging of a play based on The Tin Drum and a gala concert.

DPA

Subject: German news

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