In a debate on February 20th in the Bundestag (Germany’s parliament), Germany’s leading politicians emphasized the importance of the Stolpersteine.
Echoing Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has repeatedly praised the Stolpersteine (see below), Heiko Maas, Germany’s minister of justice, stressed the need to set forth the placement of the Stolpersteine. “They teach us about the victims of the Nazis, and help us to never forget them.”
In 2015, the Bundestag expressed its support for the Stolpersteine in a special way. They commissioned Gunter Demnig, the artist who created this form of commemoration, with the placement on the grounds of the Bundestag of Stolpersteine for ten Jewish victims of the Nazis.
At the ceremony of placement, Norbert Lammert, then president of the Bundestag, called the Stolpersteine a “unique initiative. They remind us Germans of the victims of a brutal and criminal regime of terror. They remind us of an indelible part of our history.”
On the occasion of the 75th anniversary of Reichkristallnacht, Angela Merkel stated:
“I have high praise for the Stolpersteine. This form of commemoration is found in virtually all cities in Germany. The Stolpersteine tell us what happened on Reichkristallnacht on November 9, 1938. They tell us of the persecution of the Jews. Stolpersteine compel us to encounter – on the streets of our cities – the past. They compel us to remember. And I think that’s highly important.”