05/29/2011 09:57 EDT | Updated 07/29/2011 05:12 EDT

Harper Visits Nazi Massacre Site In Greece

(CBC) - Prime Minister Stephen Harper continued his official visit to Greece on Sunday with a visit to a mountain village that was the scene of a Second World War massacre.

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou joined Harper and his wife Laureen at the Kalavryta Sacrifice Monument about 200 kilometres west of Athens, where Nazi soldiers executed about 1,000 men and boys on Dec. 13, 1943.

The German occupation forces rounded up all men and boys over the age of 14, took them to a hill overlooking the village and gunned them down. The atrocity was committed in response to attacks by Greek guerrilla fighters.

One of the men killed was the grandfather of Dimitri Soudas, the prime minister's director of communications.

The Harpers lit a candle of remembrance and laid a wreath to pay tribute to the victims.

Harper also visited what used to be a school in Kalavryta, where the Nazis locked up all the women and children while the men were being killed. The Nazis then set fire to the school, but those inside escaped through broken windows. The school is now a museum.

The prime minister is travelling with a number of Canadians of Greek heritage on his two-day visit to Greece -- including newly-elected MP Costas Menegakis and Treasury Board President Tony Clement.

After arriving for the two-day visit, Harper met with Papandreou on Saturday and the two talked about Greece's crippling debt crisis that has kept nervous markets on edge of an economic collapse.

Harper said he is confident that Greece will be able to tackle the problem, so that the European and global economy can continue to grow.