April 19. 2024. 9:28

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In Germany, King Charles honours victims of WWII allied bombings


King Charles laid a wreath to remember the victims of the allied bombardment in World War Two while visiting Hamburg’s St Nikolai Memorial, which is the site of a damaged church from Germany’s northern port.

This gesture was made on Charles’ last day of his three-day German state visit, his first since ascending to the British throne last January. It was intended to strengthen bilateral and European relations.

This comes just before the 80th anniversary the allied bombardment of Hamburg in July, also known as "Operation Gomorrah", which killed around 40,000 people and decimated large swathes of the city.

The Allies dropped 1.9 million tonnes of bombs against Germany as a response to Nazi air attacks on civilian targets in Poland, London and elsewhere. Some 500,000 people were killed in the allied attacks.

Charles paid his respects earlier at the memorial for the Kindertransporte. This rescue mission allowed approximately 10,000 Jewish children to flee Nazi-occupied Europe between 1930 and 1930. Most of the victims fled to Britain.

Charles stated that "Heeding the lessons from the past is our sacred obligation, but it cannot be fully discharged through an engagement to our shared future," in a bilingual address delivered to the Bundestag lower chamber of parliament on Thursday (30 March).

"Together, we must be vigilant for threats to our freedoms and values, and determined in our determination to face them."

Charles, his mother Queen Elizabeth’s successor, visited Hamburg on Friday (31 March) to learn more about green technology adoption and meet representatives from some of the companies involved.

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He told the Bundestag that both countries are accelerating the growth of their hydrogen economies. "This fuel could transform our future," said he. "I look forward to Hamburg’s plans for hydrogen use in its efforts towards becoming a fully sustainable port."

German officials have been praising his commitment to environmental causes and sustainability throughout his visit.

"I have great respect to his decades-long commitment towards the protection of the environment, climate and the natural world," tweeted Olaf Scholz (German Chancellor). He was designated the "climate chiefllor" during his campaign for election in 2021.

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