Portugal seeks to give compensation for slavery

(MENAFN) In a significant acknowledgment of its historical role, Portugal's President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa declared the country's acceptance of full responsibility for the crimes committed during the colonial and transatlantic slavery eras. Speaking at a dinner event with foreign reporters in Portugal, Rebelo de Sousa emphasized the need for reparations to address the mistakes of the past.

The President's remarks reflect a growing recognition of Portugal's pivotal role in the transatlantic slave trade, dating back to the 15th century when the nation became deeply involved in slave trading. Historians note that Portugal was among the first European nations to engage significantly in slave trading, bringing a substantial number of enslaved Africans across the Atlantic Ocean during the colonial era. It's estimated that Portugal transported nearly half of the 12.5 million Africans forcibly removed from their homeland and brought to the Americas during this period.

The harsh reality of the transatlantic slave trade is underscored by the staggering toll it exacted on human lives. Between the 15th and 19th centuries, over two million Africans are believed to have perished during the treacherous journey to the Americas, where they were subsequently subjected to forced labor on plantations.

Calls for accountability and restitution have echoed from African and Caribbean governments and activists for decades, urging former colonial powers to acknowledge their historical culpability and provide compensation for the enduring legacies of slavery and colonization. In response to these demands, the Portuguese President has initiated discussions on reparations, recognizing the need to address the lingering effects of Portugal's involvement in one of history's most significant forced migrations.

While last year saw Portugal's President proposing a formal apology for the nation's role in the transatlantic slave trade, the country has yet to offer a comprehensive acknowledgment or restitution for the profound injustices inflicted during this dark period of history. As Portugal grapples with its colonial past, the pursuit of reparations signifies a crucial step toward confronting historical injustices and fostering reconciliation with affected communities.RE: Poisoned gifts: The West’s apologies and reparations can be another tool to enslave Africa



Legal Disclaimer:
MENAFN provides the information “as is” without warranty of any kind. We do not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, images, videos, licenses, completeness, legality, or reliability of the information contained in this article. If you have any complaints or copyright issues related to this article, kindly contact the provider above.