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Current Affairs

Germany recognises colonial-era genocide in Namibia

Date: 01 June 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous


Germany has confessed for the first time its role in committing atrocities against the Herero and Nama people in Namibia.



The incident goes back to the colonial days (1904-08) in Africa when Germany used to control. It has promised financial compensation for its actions.



  • The area was earlier known as German South-west Africa. The German colonial settlers killed large number of people from local tribe for rebelling against the rule.

  • The German foreign minister has expressed his disappointment and said the incident would be remembered as genocide. The fund will be used for community projects.


Herero and Nama genocide

  • German colonial settlers had started settling in central highlands of the region, which was twice as large as Germany.

  • The local tribesman considered the foreign settlers as threat to their resources and land. The conflict reached a high point when Herero pastorals and later Nama opposed the settlers.

  • The German colonists and Herero tribe reached a compromise when a fight took place. Germany did not want a compromise but a military solution.

  • The German forces chased and killed Herero fighter in to the Kalahari desert. Out of the total force of 80,000 Hereros only 15,000 survived.

  • A similar incident took place with the Nama fighters when they too rebelled against the German colonialists. About 10,000 of them were killed.


Impact of the events

  • Some historians consider the event as the first genocide of 20th century. The two countries started a negotiation to reconcile the people.

  • Namibia refused the offer as unacceptable. Germany returned skeletal remains of Herero and Nama tribesmen that were used in experiments.

  • The descendents of Herero and Nama people have refused to accept the deal. They consider it as a PR stunt by Germany.