Although the war raged from 1914 to 1919, in the then German colony, Deutsch Suedwestafrika, it came to an end on 09 July 1915 when the last German troops surrendered to forces of the Union of South Africa at Khorab in what is today central Namibia.
Commemorating this event, the local diplomatic representatives of Germany and the UK put together a roving exhibition, first displayed at Khorab, and then at the Namibia Scientific Society in Windhoek. The exhibition ran until this week Wednesday.
At the official opening, Mr Ullrich Kinne, Chargé d’Affaires at the German Embassy greeted the numerous guests, among them the British High Commissioner, H.E. Marianne Young, representatives of the Museum Association of Namibia, the diplomatic corps and members of the public, noting that this event probably marks the beginning of several years of successive centennial celebrations on the end of the war.
“It might therefore very well set the tone and direction of how to deal with the legacy of this momentous tragedy in the years to come.” He emphasized that “the German Embassy, the British High Commission and all further diplomatic missions present celebrated the end of World War I together with the Namibian side and that this bears testimony to the power of reconciliation which has taken place over the last 100 years. For this, Germany is grateful.”
The exhibition comprises five display panels compiled by the national museum in cooperation with the History Society at UNAM, the British High Commission and the National Archives. Additionally, historic photos, maps and battle plans from the Scientific Society Swakopmund as well as books about the First World War were displayed.