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Petition: Genocide is Genocide!

The German political establishment urged Turkey to acknowledge the Armenian genocide. Now, numerous public figures also call for an official recognition of and an apology for Germany's genocide perpetrated against the OvaHerero and Nama of Namibia between 1904-08.

More than 150 public figures, among them many prominent professors of international law, politics and history; representatives of political parties and of the churches, from arts and culture, the Black community and NGOs, have gone public with a petition entitled Genocide is Genocide! The petition has been initiated to mark the centenary of the end of German colonial rule on 9 July 2015, in former German South-West Africa, present-day Namibia.

Among the notable signatories are the former Minister of Development Wiezorek-Zeul; the long-time Mayor of Bremen, Scherf (both Social Democratic Party); the Ambassadors (ret.) Vergau and Schleicher; the peace researcher Senghaas and the regional specialist Kappel; MPs Wagenknecht (The LEFT) and Diaby (SPD); Brandenburgs former Commissioner for Foreigners, Berger; and the chairperson of the Central Council of the African Community in Germany, Kamara.

The signatories call on the German President, the Bundestag and the German Government to

- finally acknowledge the genocide against the OvaHerero and Nama;

- to formally ask the descendants of the victims of genocide for forgiveness;

- and to identify and repatriate all of the human remains deported to Germany as well as participate in an unconditional open dialogue with the descendants of the victims of genocide and the Namibian government vis--vis reconciliation.

Up to 80% of the OvaHerero, 50% of the Nama and many Damara and San were victims of what was the first genocide of the 20th century.

Despite the clear intention to exterminate these Namibian peoples, the German political establishment has failed to officially recognize the genocide and apologize to the descendants of those who were deprived, robbed and killed.

Prior to assuming his present function, the current Foreign Minister Steinmeier (SPD) urged the Federal Government to take such a step.


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