World

Germany's Merkel, Poland's Kopacz mark 25 years of reconciliation between former foe nations

  • Poland's Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz,right, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, look at a shirt of a man reading "Freedom- made in Poland" in Krzyzowa, Poland, on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, where they met to mark 25 years since a symbolic reconciliation between the two neighboring nations whose  ties  were  marked by warfare. Speaking on the occasion,  Merkel  stressed that security, freedom and the rule of law are made even more valuable today, when Ukraine’s territorial integrity has been violated. “We are aware that only together with Russia we can assure Europe’s long-term security,” Merkel said.    (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

    Poland's Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz,right, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, look at a shirt of a man reading "Freedom- made in Poland" in Krzyzowa, Poland, on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, where they met to mark 25 years since a symbolic reconciliation between the two neighboring nations whose ties were marked by warfare. Speaking on the occasion, Merkel stressed that security, freedom and the rule of law are made even more valuable today, when Ukraine’s territorial integrity has been violated. “We are aware that only together with Russia we can assure Europe’s long-term security,” Merkel said. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)  (The Associated Press)

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, and Poland’s Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz, right, shake hands before talks in Krzyzowa, Poland, on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, where they met  to mark 25 years since a symbolic reconciliation between Poland and Germany whose ties were marked by warfare in the past.  (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, and Poland’s Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz, right, shake hands before talks in Krzyzowa, Poland, on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, where they met to mark 25 years since a symbolic reconciliation between Poland and Germany whose ties were marked by warfare in the past. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)  (The Associated Press)

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel   walks   as she visits an exhibition, during celebrations  to commemorate   25 years since a symbolic reconciliation between the two neighboring nations whose  ties  were  marked by warfare in Krzyzowa, Poland, Thursday Nov. 20, 2014. Speaking on the occasion,  Merkel  stressed that security, freedom and the rule of law are made even more valuable today, when Ukraine’s territorial integrity has been violated. “We are aware that only together with Russia we can assure Europe’s long-term security,” Merkel said.    (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel walks as she visits an exhibition, during celebrations to commemorate 25 years since a symbolic reconciliation between the two neighboring nations whose ties were marked by warfare in Krzyzowa, Poland, Thursday Nov. 20, 2014. Speaking on the occasion, Merkel stressed that security, freedom and the rule of law are made even more valuable today, when Ukraine’s territorial integrity has been violated. “We are aware that only together with Russia we can assure Europe’s long-term security,” Merkel said. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)  (The Associated Press)

Polish and German government leaders have marked 25 years since a historic reconciliation between the two neighbors nations whose past was marred by warfare.

Polish Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz hosted German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday at talks and the opening of an exhibition in Krzyzowa, southwestern Poland, where 25 years ago their predecessors shared a gesture of friendship.

Just days after the Berlin Wall fell, in a symbolic end to Europe's division, Chancellor Helmut Kohl and Poland's first non-communist Prime Minister Tadeusz Mazowiecki shared a hug that ended the communist-era enmity. Germany was the main advocate of Poland's joining the European Union in 2004.

Merkel said that gesture was a "milestone" in bilateral ties.

Poland was under brutal German occupation during World War II.