Namibia President Hage Geingob says his government has turned down Germany’s offer of compensation for colonial-era killings, calling it “not acceptable.”
Geingob said in a statement that Germany has continued to call efforts to seek redress with the government and those affected in the conflict “healing of wounds” instead of reparations.
German troops killed up to 80,000 of Herero and Nama people in the southern African country between 1904 and 1908 in response to an anti-colonial uprising, according to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
According to historians, the bloody conflict happened when the Herero indigenous people revolted against colonial troops over land seizures. Germany, which today gives development aid to Namibia, offered its first formal apology for the conflict in 2004.
Both countries have been in talks since 2015 to negotiate compensation for the massacre by German colonial forces. So far, eight rounds of negotiations have taken place between the countries.
“The current offer for reparations made by the German Government remains an outstanding issue and is not acceptable to the Namibian Government,” the president said in the statement on Tuesday.
He did not give details of the offer.
CNN reached out to Germany’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs for comment but is yet to receive a response.
Descendants of the few survivors are still seeking $4 billion compensation from the German government for what they claim was an orchestrated campaign of extermination that preceded Germany’s genocidal policies of World War II.
And for many years the Namibian government had asked Germany to call the war genocide and commit to reparations to the affected tribes.
While Germany has acknowledged and expressed regrets for its imperial troops’ role in the conflict, it has refused to pay compensation.
In the statement on Tuesday, Geingob said both governments have agreed to a political settlement, and its representative will continue to negotiate a revised offer.
In 2019, Germany returned a stolen 15th century artifact it took from Namibia known as the Stone Cross. The gesture was described by Monika Gruetters, Germany’s Minister of State for Media and Culture, as “a clear signal that we are committed to reappraising the colonial past.”