Rotterdam commemorates the bombing of 1940, nearly 900 people were killed
Dozens of people attended a memorial ceremony in Rotterdam on Sunday afternoon to commemorate the bombing 83 years ago on May 14,1940. On Plein 1940 near Zadkine's sculpture The Destroyed City, Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb laid a wreath.
Op 14 mei begint Rotterdam met de herdenking van het bombardement in 1940. pic.twitter.com/GxXqcn01GX— Paul (@PaulvDorst) May 14, 2023
Aboutaleb stated that Rotterdam reinvented itself after the bombing and that the city will always do one thing, tell the story of the bombing of Rotterdam. He referred to the war that is now raging in Ukraine, that there, too, will come a time when "the weapons finally rest" and Ukrainians must rise again. "In this city we know better than anyone else how that feels and what it takes to do that," the mayor stressed.
Throughout Rotterdam there were Sunday gatherings, laying of wreaths, music, poems and moments of silence. During the commemoration on Plein 1940, two minutes of silence were held at 1:27 p.m. After that, bells rang throughout the city. On May 14,1940, at that time, German bombers destroyed almost the entire city center in less than fifteen minutes. Nearly 900 people lost their lives and 80,000 citizens were left homeless. The attack marked the capitulation of the Netherlands.
#OTD 14 may 1940 at 1:30PM local time, German bombers dropped 1,400 bombs on the Dutch city of Rotterdam, destroying the entire historical centre and killing ~1,000 civilians. #WWII pic.twitter.com/osh8O1jvLQ— 𝕆𝕟 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕕𝕒𝕪 𝕚𝕟 𝕙𝕚𝕤𝕥𝕠𝕣𝕪 (@changnoi2018) May 14, 2023
In the morning was also the annual commemoration on the Statenweg near number 147. That is the spot where in 1940 the German ultimatum "surrender or the city will be destroyed" was delivered. Not much later the bombing of Rotterdam followed.
Reporting by ANP