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Municipality in Santa Catarina Is Demanding War Reparations From German Government

01/31/2018 - 10h55

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PATRÍCIA CAMPOS MELLO
FROM SÃO PAULO

São Francisco do Sul, a municipality in Santa Catarina, is demanding financial compensations from the German government in the form of war reparations.

Lawyers from the municipality are arguing that a canal in São Francisco do Sul was covered up back in 1935 in order to store war equipment that had been shipped from Nazi Germany. The lawyers argue that the city should be compensated, given that the burying of the canal resulted in environmental damages.

In 1933, Getúlio Vargas, then head of the interim government, ordered that the Linguado Canal be buried in order to build the São Paulo-Rio Grande do Sul railway.

According to lawyer Maristela Basso, who is coordinating the lawsuit, war equipment would arrive in the port of São Francisco in German ships and submarines, and would then be assembled (or manufactured) in the region before being sent to other destinations.

"We want São Francisco do Sul to be included in the list of German war reparations", Ms. Basso, a law professor at the University of São Paulo, said. "In order to achieve this, we will demonstrate the causal link between the burying of the canal and German military colonization which took place at the time."

The attorneys who represent the mayor of São Francisco do Sul, Renato Lobo, sent a letter to the German embassy and will meet with consulate officials as well as members of the Pulbic Prosecutor's Office in São Paulo, on Wednesday (the 31st).

The consulate general of Germany in São Paulo stated that the official position of the German government was the following: the burying of the canal "was a decision made by the Brazilian government, arrived at before World War II in order to supply a Brazilian factory with war supplies. It is, therefore, the responsibility of the Brazilian government."

Translated by THOMAS MATHEWSON

Read the article in the original language

Zanone Fraissat/Folhapress
São Francisco do Sul, a municipality in Santa Catarina, is demanding financial compensations from the German government in the form of war reparations
São Francisco do Sul, a municipality in Santa Catarina, is demanding financial compensations from the German government in the form of war reparations

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