The Greek community in Munich has reacted angrily to a decision by municipal authorities in the German city to take back a plot of land ceded in 2001 for the construction of a Greek school.
The agreement between the two countries stipulated that construction had to be completed by a specific deadline, but 15 years later only the building’s frame had been erected. Successive delays prompted the Municipal Council of Karlsfeld, where the school was to be located, some 12 kilometers from central Munich, to vote on Thursday against setting a new deadline for the project and instead order the demolition of the existing structure.
“Incompetent representatives of every [Greek] government from 2001 to the present, you have succeeded with your intentional decision to strip us… of our dream,” the letter, signed “the Greek Community” and addressed to “the Greek political leadership past and present,” reads. “The Greek Community accuses you… and asks the also incompetent government of today whether it has the courage to expose those responsible for this outcome.”
Deputy Education Minister Theodosis Pelegrinis, who is responsible for matters pertaining to the diaspora, responded to the letter in comments to Kathimerini on Thursday.
“For 15 years, governments did nothing and we were treated with suspicion by the Bavarians because of the obtuseness of previous governments,” Pelegrinis said. “We tried to move ahead with the construction but were unable to reverse the climate of unreliability that was bequeathed to us.”
Pelegrinis added that the government will pursue the matter.
Germany has a population of roughly 400,000 Greeks, the biggest concentrations of which are in Frankfurt, Munich and Stuttgart.