Greek World War II hero Manolis Glezos, 92, a Member of the European Parliament, said he will raise the issue of German war reparations in September.
Glezos, who, with his friend the late Apostolos Santas, tore the Swastika down from the Acropolis and replaced it with the Greek flag in 1941, is a member of Greece’s major opposition Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) and said he would put forth the reparations question through the Party of the European Left, he told the German news outlet Deutsche Welle.
In his comments Glezos referred to Germany’s “debts,” as opposed to reparations, to the Greek state and to private citizens for crimes, atrocities and damages Greece suffered under the Nazis.
It’s a touchy subject as Germany is now the biggest lender to Greece under international bailouts and has insisted it won’t pay any more than it has in previous awards.
Glezos insisted that the compensation that Greece received following the war fell short of the 7.2 billion euros it originally claimed, while the country was also forced by the Nazis to take out an “occupational loan” which was never repaid.
Meanwhile, Germany denies owing anything to Greece after the sum of 115 million German marks was paid in 1960, one of 12 war compensation agreements signed with Western countries. Other Greek officials had previously talked about stolen gold and other losses for Greece.