News from Berlin and Germany, 12th July 2023

Weekly news round-up from Berlin and Germany



Mohrenstrasse to be renamed: a defeat for old white men

Seven ‘culture campaigners’ face defeat at Berlin’s Administrative Court on Thursday once the court rejected their objections to the renaming of Mohrenstraße to Anton-W.-Amo-Straße. Since 2020, anti-colonialist activists have been fighting to find a new name for the street. Among the older men who went to court to save a racist street name was the well-known historian Götz Aly. Regina Römhild, professor at the Institute for European Ethnology (Humboldt University), located on “M Street”, mentions there have been many negative reactions. “I work closely with people from South Africa, and they are surprised. It’s damaging for Berlin as an international metropolis.” Source: nd-aktuell


German inflation rate rises again

After three months of steady easing, inflation rate in Germany is on the rise again. According to Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), monthly figures have revealed inflation rates have been at 6.4 percent in June, up from 6.1 percent in May. The main explanations given for these rises is that the baseline for inflation was measured in June 2022 when the 9-euro ticket went on sale as well as the fuel discount and the energy relief package offered by the government last year. However, food prices remain the biggest driver of inflation in the country. Source: iamexpat

No objections to AfD district administrator

After a review of his “loyalty to the constitution”, the AfD politician Robert Stuhlmann can remain district administrator in the southern Thuringian district of Sonneberg. In the case of Stuhlmann, “no concrete circumstances are currently seen that are of sufficient weight and objectively suitable to trigger serious concern about his future fulfilment of the duty of loyalty to the constitution,” said the Thuringian state administration office last Monday in Weimar. The review had been started ex officio. The AfD have called the test a scandal and an attack on democracy. Source: jungewelt

Agreement on hospital reform

Last Monday, Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) presented the hospital reform with agreement with almost all federal states. This was preceded by a tough and months-long struggle among the federal and state governments over content and competencies. Lauterbach promised a revolution in the industry, especially in terms of quality. The States and the federal government agreed on subjects such as funding, to be linked to quality criteria – which seems to have been agreed upon. The reform is set to come into force in January 2024, and the new financing system is not expected to take effect until 2025 at the earliest, because of amendment of state laws. Source: taz

Summer 2022: more than 60,000 heat deaths in Europe

In the hottest summer on the continent since records began, almost 8,200 people died in Germany alone because of the high temperatures. Scientists have been calling for prevention plans. The study, carried out by the French state health research institute Inserm and the Spanish institute ISGlobal, have stated, if there are no appropriate protective measures, there will be an average of 68,000 heat deaths every year from 2030 onwards. By 2040, the number of victims could rise to more than 94,000. The study also highlights that already in 2003 there were a high number of heat-related deaths. Source: dw

Germany is supplying arms to Ukraine worth 700 million euro

Germany is supporting Ukraine’s defence against the Russian invasion with additional weapons, ammunition, and military equipment worth almost 700 million euro. There are also 20,000 rounds of artillery ammunition and 5,000 rounds of smoke ammunition, as well as reconnaissance drones and anti-drone defences. In addition, Ukraine will receive a pioneer package with mine countermeasures and a medical package – including components for a field hospital. Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) landed in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius this Tuesday together with Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) and will officially announce the package at the start of the NATO summit. Source: pnp

Klingbeil on marital splitting: austerity proposal at an inopportune time

In and of itself, the abolition of ‘marital splitting’, that is, the promotion of the traditional division of roles in partnerships via tax law, would be progress. Feminists and leftists have been calling for it for decades. However, the timing of the abolition of the tax advantages for single-earner marriages proposed by SPD leader Lars Klingbeil, that is, during a serve cost of living crisis, has drawn criticism. Worse, Klingbei wants to prevent the abolition of parental allowance for very high-earning couples. Without a basic child allowance worthy of such a name, families with low incomes would suffer the worst consequences from the abolition of the marital splitting system. Source: nd-aktuell

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