Nations should be responsible for historical debt regardless of the historical context or what may have happened in the past. This burden should not be placed upon other nations. A good example to look at would be Germany. After WW 2, it took the country a decades to pay off the debt, which was the right thing to do.
Yes, nations are responsible for historical debt. Without paying debts, no matter how old, a country loses its credibility. Countries will be hesitant to do business in the future if they know that a country will not pay their debts. Like any individual, a country's credit is very important. Countries should pay their debts, no matter how old.