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Germany earmarks funds for Russian siege survivors

Berlin and Moscow announce that Germany has provided 12 million euros to help Russian World War II veterans and siege survivors but Moscow said it was not enough.

The announcement comes as Russia marked the 75th anniversary of the end of a World War II siege of Leningrad that claimed more than 800,000 lives.

The initiative was billed as a “voluntary humanitarian gesture towards the surviving victims of the blockade.”

Saint Petersburg, formerly known as Leningrad, is home to around 86,000 siege survivors.

“We, foreign ministers of Germany and Russia, welcome the decision of the German government to provide 12 million euros ($13.7 million) for the modernization of a hospital for war veterans and the establishment of a German-Russian meeting center,” German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov says.

“We are confident that this voluntary action will improve the quality of life of the surviving victims of the siege and serve in the historical reconciliation of the people of both countries as a basis for our bilateral relations in the future,” the ministers says.

— AFP

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