Posted on April 29, 2024

Portugal Says No Plans to Pay Colonial Reparations

DW, April 28, 2024

Lisbon is not planning to pay reparations for trans-Atlantic slavery and colonialism, Portugal’s government said on Saturday.

The statement comes in response to remarks by President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, who said Portugal could find ways to compensate its former colonies.


Portugal said in a statement that it seeks to “deepen mutual relations, respect for historical truth and increasingly intense and close cooperation, based on reconciliation of brotherly peoples.”

It stressed that it had not launched any “process or program of specific actions” for paying reparations.


Portugal’s president called on Lisbon to initiate a reparations process in comments made to reporters on Saturday, saying that the issue could not be swept “under the carpet.”

“We have an obligation … to lead this process (of reparations),” de Sousa argued.

He suggested that Portugal could pay reparations by canceling the debt of former colonies, developing special cooperation programs or providing financing.