Multiculturalism Germans

The German population in Romania peaked in the 1930s when there were 800,000 Saxons in Transylvania. Numbers have dwindled to no more than 65,000 today. During WWII, 175,000 Romanian Germans were killed or left the country. After Romania switched sides to join the Allies against Hitler's Nazi Germany, 70,000 Germans were accused of Nazi collaboration and sentenced to five years hard labour. Survivors returned to find their land and property confiscated by the newly installed communist regime.

Under Ceau^escu, Germans, like all other inhabitants, were not allowed to freely leave Romania. Instead Ceau$escu charged West Germany about $8000 for each exit permit it issued. In the 1980s, some 70,000 exit permits were 'bought'. Unsurprisingly, between 1989 and 1995 an estimated 100,000 Germans left the country. Today's remaining Saxon community in Transylvania is served by state-run German schools and represented politically by the German Democratic Forum (Demo-kratisches Forum der Deutschen).

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