Germany to Fight Court Ruling on Damages for Nazi Crimes

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"The government intends to obtain a clarification on the issue from the International Court of Justice," a foreign ministry spokeswoman said in Berlin.

German news magazine Der Spiegel said Berlin planned to argue before The Hague court that sovereign actions by countries, including those of their armed forces, are protected under international law by sovereign immunity.

Diplomats fear that the floodgates would otherwise be opened for "legal claims against historical injustice," in other countries as well. That would lead to "legal uncertainty around the globe," Der Spiegel quoted diplomats as saying.

Germany says verdict "unacceptable"

The German move relates to a October 21 ruling by a Rome court that Germany should pay nine families damages of 1 million euros ($1.3 million) for relatives killed when Nazi soldiers massacred 203 people at Civitella in northern Italy in June 1944.

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