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Germany to compensate those abducted and “Germanised” during WWII

77 years after the end of WWII, the German state of Baden-Württemberg is to pay compensation to people who were abducted as children by the Germans from Poland and other occupied territories, the website of the German SWR station reported.

Children abducted by the Germans were “Germanised” and beaten for years. There are individuals who are still undergoing psychotherapy today, while some have committed suicide. Currently, only three survivors are known in Baden-Württemberg.

The compensations are the result of a petition by the Freiburg-based association “Stolen Children – Forgotten Victims”.

In the early 1940s, the Germans deported tens of thousands of children from the occupied eastern territories only because they had blond hair and blue eyes. It was Reichskommissar Heinrich Himmler’s idea to strengthen the “Aryan race” in this way, said the association member Christoph Schwarz, quoted by SWR.

“Stolen children” were “forcibly separated from their families and sent to so-called Lebensborn children’s homes, where they were subjected to the “germanisation process”, the website explained. “That is, they were given new names and were only allowed to speak German – the educational methods were harsh, children who refused to comply received severe punishments.”

“Children were beaten and sometimes even flogged. There are people who are still undergoing psychotherapy today, some committed suicide because they could not cope with the trauma,” Mr Schwarz said.

“For more than ten years, the association has been fighting at federal and state level for reparations and recognition as victims of the Nazi regime. Now, finally, the petition committee in the parliament in Stuttgart (Baden-Württemberg) has approved the request,” SWR wrote. “All parliamentary groups were in favour… the victims are to be compensated quickly and unbureaucratically from a special money pool.”

As a state, we do not want to shirk our responsibility, even though the federal government is actually responsible,” Thomas Marwein, Chairman of the Committee on Petitions and Green Party MP said.


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