German President Asks Forgiveness from Black September Victims’ Families

German President Asks Forgiveness from Black September Victims’ Families

Germany officially asked forgiveness Monday from the families of the victims killed during the 1972 hostage raid at the Munich Olympics.

“We can’t compensate for what happened, nor for what you experienced and suffered. I am ashamed of this,” German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier said at a ceremony at the NATO airbase in Fürstenfeldbruck held to commemorate the tragic death of Israeli athletes 50 years ago. Israel’s president Isaac Herzog and the Israeli Olympic team attended the ceremony.

Sunday he announced agreement had been reached for paying compensation to the families of the victims, but said it was shameful it took 50 years to come to this agreement.

On September 5, 1972, eight Palestinians from the terrorist group Black September broke into two apartments used by the Israeli team at the Olympic village in Munich. They shot two and took nine Israelis hostage. West German police made the decision to attack the terrorists and free the hostages, but all the hostages were killed during the raid in and around the airbase, along with five of the eight terrorists and a police officer. West Germany was condemned around the world for lax security at the Olympic village and for the failed rescue attempt.

Full story in Lithuanian here.