News from Berlin and Germany, 17th January 2024

Weekly news round-up from Berlin and Germany



Remembering and fighting

Solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for freedom, the call for peace, and the necessity of socialism played a central role during the 29th International Rosa Luxemburg Conference, organised by junge Welt, with a record attendance of 3,700. “Viva Palestine” could also be heard as the kilometer-long commemoration demo marched under red flags to the cemetery where Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, murdered 105 years ago, are buried. Solidarity with Palestine was, however, the trigger for brutal police attacks. Among the 16 demonstrators arrested, according to the police, were several musicians from the Anatolian Grup Yorum, currently on hunger strike for comrades imprisoned in West Germany. Source: jW

Thousands of demonstrators protest against traffic light policy

Thousands of farmers, tradespeople, and transporters demonstrated against the policies of the German government in front of the Brandenburg Gate on Monday. Joachim Rukwied, president of a farmers’ association, demanded that additional burdens on agriculture be cancelled. In addition to the farmers, the transport industry also called on the federal government to change course. “Our industry has had enough too,” said Dirk Engelhardt, spokesman for the Federal Association of Road Freight Transport, Logistics and Disposal (BGL). Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) was loudly insulted and booed at the demonstration. Lindner referred to the need to make savings, offering in return a reduction in bureaucracy and more entrepreneurial freedom. Source: rbb24


Right-wing secret plan against Germany

On 25 November, at a hotel near Potsdam, a meeting that looked like a chamber play took place – but it was reality. A group of politicians (AfD, CDU), neo-Nazis and businesspeople were there to hear about secret plans. Their most important goal: “Remigration,” the ability to expel people from Germany based on racist criteria, regardless of whether they have a German passport or not. Although this “conference” was secret, copies of letters were leaked to CORRECTIV, and its team was able to film undercover at the hotel. In addition, Greenpeace researched the meeting and provided CORRECTIV with photos and copies of documents. Source: correctiv

Thousands demonstrate in Potsdam and Berlin for democracy and against the right-wing

Following the revelations about the meeting between radical right-wingers and AfD politicians in Brandenburg, thousands of people demonstrated for democracy in Potsdam. Demonstrations are also taking place in Berlin, at the Brandenburg Gate. Mayor Mike Schubert (SPD), who called for the Potsdam rally, talked of 10,000 participants. The demonstrators held up placards with slogans such as “We stick together.” Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) and Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) were among those taking part. Source: rbb24

New faces, but only three women

“One for all” is written on the banner of the self-proclaimed first “democratic-Christian-social coalition,” which will govern the federal state of Hesse after the constituent session of the Hessian state parliament. Boris Rhein, as re-elected Minister President of Hesse, and Nancy Faeser, as Federal Minister of the Interior, will remain in office. In his second cabinet, Minister-President Rhein relies on many new and significantly younger members of staff. However, in addition to Rhein and seven other men, there are only three women in the twelve-person cabinet, falling short of the 25% quota that Rhein himself had announced. Source: taz

Perpetrators are bad judges

Africa is becoming increasingly important, and Germany, according to official statements, strives for a “partnership of equals.” However, as the International Court of Justice in The Hague started hearings in South Africa’s lawsuit against Israel for genocide in Gaza, Germany rejected South Africa’s accusations. The German government also failed to mention that the same day was the 120th anniversary of the start of the German genocide against the Herero and the Nama people. Namibia’s president now accuses Germany of not having learned any lessons from its own history. Source: taz

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