Angela Merkel Dodged Question On Poland’s Controversial Holocaust Bill by the Forward

Angela Merkel Dodged Question On Poland’s Controversial Holocaust Bill

Image by Getty

German Prime Minister Angela Merkel declined to comment on Saturday on Poland’s controversial bill that criminalizes statements attributing any fault for the Holocaust to Polish people or the Polish state, the Irish Times reported.

“Without directly interfering in the legislation in Poland, I would like to say the following very clearly as German chancellor: We as Germans are responsible for what happened during the Holocaust, the Shoah, under National Socialism [Nazism],” Merkel said in an episode of her weekly podcast. Merkel was responding to a question from a student, who asked if the law limits freedom of speech in Poland.

The Polish law, recently signed by Polish President Andrzej Duda, states the anyone who lays any blame for the Holocaust with Poland can be sentenced to three years in prison. It is seen as a response to the practice of referring to Nazi-run death camps in Poland, such as Auschwitz-Birkenau, as “Polish death camps.”

Merkel’s response came ahead of a meeting planned with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki next week in Berlin.

Contact Ari Feldman at or on Twitter @aefeldman


Ari Feldman

Ari Feldman

Ari Feldman is a staff writer at the Forward. He covers Jewish religious organizations, synagogue life, anti-Semitism and the Orthodox world. If you have any tips, you can email him at Follow him on Twitter @aefeldman.

Angela Merkel Avoids Poland Holocaust Bill In Podcast

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Angela Merkel Dodged Question On Poland’s Controversial Holocaust Bill

Thank you!

This article has been sent!