Poland asks US Congress to solicit war reparations from Germany
The Polish government's envoy for reparations says that Poland needs the US's help in making Germany agree to pay war reparations.
Poland is asking for the US Congress' assistance in making Germany agree to pay reparations for the damage inflicted on Warsaw during WWII, the Polish government's envoy for reparations, Arkadiusz Mularczyk, said on Tuesday.
Poland has already asked the same from the United Nations, UNESCO, the Council of Europe, as well as 50 countries, including EU and NATO member states.
"We are counting on the support of our partners from the United States, US legislators, in the issue of Poland receiving compensation for the consequences of the Second World War," Mularczyk told reporters.
Warsaw considered the US "a key country when it comes to respecting the international order, human rights, the rule of law, international justice," Mularczyk added.
Germany informed Poland in late December that it does not intend to negotiate wartime reparations, according to the Polish Foreign Ministry.
Poland and Germany should negotiate reparations for World War II damages, but must consider the time factor during the negotiations, according to US World War II veteran Frank Cohn.
“Poland obviously was damaged badly by Germany and should have received reparations. Perhaps better late than never. I guess there should be negotiations and the time factor ought to come into consideration,” Cohn said.
While Cohn acknowledged that Germany caused damage to Poland during the war and that it should have received reparations, he added that Warsaw should have requested reparations sooner. In addition, Cohn said the amount of $1.36 trillion in reparations that Poland is requesting is “a bit excessive.”
Relations between Poland and Germany have been strained by Warsaw's repeated references to war damages and reparations demands. Warsaw estimates that the Nazi occupation of Poland during WWII cost it $1.36 trillion. Berlin claims that under the 1953 agreement, the Polish government waived all claims for reparations.
Earlier this month, Poland rejected Germany's refusal to compensate Warsaw for World War II damages dealt to the country during the Nazi era. "We do not accept Germany's position. We reject it in its entirety and treat it as unfounded and wrong," said the Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk.
The lower chamber of Poland's parliament voted last September to demand Germany pay $1.3 trillion in reparations for damages sustained during the Nazi era.