Germany officially recognises colonial-era Namibia genocide

Germany officially recognises colonial-era Namibia genocide
The deal follows years of efforts toward reconciliation, including repatriation of remains. Source: EPA
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Daily US Times: Germany has officially admitted that it committed genocide during its colonial-era occupation of Namibia. The German government also announced a financial support gesture.

German colonisers killed tens of thousands of Nama and Herero people there in early 20th Century massacres.

On Friday, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas admitted that the killings as genocide.

He said: “In light of Germany’s historical and moral responsibility, we will ask Namibia and the descendants of the victims for forgiveness,” he said.

The German foreign minister added that Germany would, in a “gesture to recognise the immense suffering inflicted on the victims”, support Namibia’s development through a programme worth more than $1.34bn.

The agreement will reportedly see funding paid over 30 years through spending on healthcare, infrastructure and training programmes benefiting the impacted communities.

In Friday’s statement, Mr Maas said: “We will now officially refer to these events as what they are from today’s perspective: genocide,” adding that colonial-era actions should be discussed “without sparing or glossing over”.

A Namibian government spokesperson told that Germany’s recognition was “a first step in the right direction”.

But some traditional leaders in the country have accused the government of selling out and refused to endorse the package offered.

The German government announcement came after five years of negotiations with Namibia – which was under German occupation from 1884 to 1915.

The atrocities committed by the Germans at that time have been described by historians as “the forgotten genocide” of the early 20th Century, in what was then known as German South West Africa.

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