Duda: Poland will ‘never’ pay for Jewish assets lost during Holocaust

Contender in Poland's key presidential election runoff Sunday, liberal Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski speaks to supporters during a campaign rally, in Raciaz, Poland, on July 9, 2020. (AP)

 (I24) Poland will never approve reparations for heir-less Jewish assets lost during the Holocaust, Polish President Andrzej Duda said, Bloomberg reported on Thursday.

“There won’t be any damages paid for heir-less property,” Duda told Poland’s state television after the topic has come up ahead of the upcoming nation’s election.

“I will never sign a law that will privilege any ethnic group vis-a-vis others. Damages should be paid by the one that started the war,” he added.

The restitution issue has resurfaced in recent years following calls by Jewish organizations for compensation of property of victims who died in World War II and left no heirs, according to Bloomberg.

Duda stressed that descendants can appeal in Polish courts for reparations but dismissed the notion that his country should pay for historic wrongs caused by Nazi Germany.

Poland is the only member of the European Union that has not passed a restitution legislation for property seized by the Nazis or nationalized under Soviet Russia.

With Duda currently sliding in the polls, his campaign has reportedly focused on mobilizing the conservative vote as much as possible, elevating national sentiments