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The German President Seeks Forgiveness for Colonial Atrocities in Tanzania

President Frank-Walter Steinmeier Apologizes for Crimes Committed During Germany's Colonial Rule in Tanzania

by Gee Tv
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German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has formally apologized for the atrocities committed by the German military during Germany’s colonial rule in Tanzania between 1905 and 1907. During a visit to the Maji Maji Museum in Songea, a southern city in Tanzania, Steinmeier requested forgiveness for the actions of Germans against the local population, as well as their ancestors.

Tanzania was once part of German East Africa, and during this period, the German military was involved in brutal suppression, including the killing of an estimated two to three hundred thousand local residents in what is considered one of the bloodiest colonial uprisings in history. Steinmeier stated, “I want to assure you that we, the Germans, are ready to work with you to find answers to the challenging questions that have troubled you.”

Experts estimate that during the Maji Maji Rebellion, which occurred between 1905 and 1907, the German forces were responsible for widespread destruction of villages and farmlands. Steinmeier expressed a sense of shame upon hearing about these events and acknowledged that Germany’s past actions in Tanzania left a stain of religiously motivated violence.

Steinmeier emphasized that Germany is willing to collaborate with Tanzania to help cleanse the dark chapter of history and work towards reconciliation. He also stated that the Maji Maji Museum visit allowed him to witness and learn about the events that transpired, which are a shared part of their history. He pledged to educate the German public about what he had seen and learned in Tanzania.

During his three-day visit to Tanzania, President Steinmeier promised that Germany would consider the return of cultural artifacts and human remains to Tanzania. He emphasized the need to engage in discussions about repatriating these items as a part of the process of coming to terms with the historical legacy.

The President’s visit to the Maji Maji Museum and his apology serve as a significant step in acknowledging and addressing the historical injustices committed during the colonial era, bridging the gap between Germany and Tanzania’s shared history.

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