News from Berlin and Germany: 22nd May 2021

Weekly news roundup from Berlin and Germany


Compiled by Ana Ferreira



Berlin minister resigns for copying her dissertation

Franziska Giffey is resigning as Federal Minister for Family Affairs. As reported, the Free University of Berlin (FU) is said to have concluded that Giffey’s dissertation, from 2010, should be withdrawn. In 2019, the minister herself declared, while there was already a previous examination of her thesis, she would resign her post in this case. Nevertheless, her now announced withdrawal is surprising for two reasons. Firstly, only a week ago Giffey did not want to hear about corresponding demands for her resignation. And secondly, the examination board of the FU, has not yet completed its task. Giffey has until the beginning of June to comment. Source: nd

Demonstrations during “Pfingsten” holiday prohibited in Berlin

Five protest rallies in Berlin, registered for Whitsun (“Pfingsten”), were banned by the assembly authorities – including two demonstrations by critics of the state’s Corona restrictions, each with 16,000 registered participants. A police spokesperson said on Wednesday evening that the bans were “primarily based on infection control and the predicted assembly situation”. The demonstrations, planned to happen from Saturday on, claim to want to walk for peace, freedom and fundamental rights, reject “pharmaceutical fascism” and supposed “compulsory vaccination for children”. By far the largest number of demonstrations with a corona-critical slant are registered for Whit Monday. Source: morgenpost


Merkel and Lauterbach for rapid school vaccinations

The government wants to initiate a vaccination summit to get young citizens vaccinated as soon as possible. According to Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), the consultations planned for 27 May will focus, among other things, on the vaccination of children, vocational school pupils and students. Since they have a particularly large number of contacts, rapid vaccination in these age groups is seen as the key to a lasting reduction in the number of corona infections. In a meeting of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group on Tuesday, Merkel emphasized that the Indian virus variant that the more aggressive a new virus variant is, the more people must be vaccinated to achieve collective immunity. Source; tagesspiegel

Corona vaccines to be available to all

From 7 June, anyone is over 16 years old will be able register for a vaccination against the corona virus in Germany. Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn went public with this happy news on Monday of this week. On the other hand, this makes it not possible to increase the vaccination rate in the short term simply because prioritisation is no longer necessary. And the difference between the various vaccines remains considerable: “If you want to be vaccinated with BionTech, you have a waiting time of four to six weeks, if you want AstraZeneca, you can have a vaccination appointment next week.” Source: dw

Data collection on leftists unlawful

The Göttingen police department has again lost a legal battle over the legality of data collection by the State Security Service on suspected members of the left-wing scene. The Göttingen Administrative Court ruled that storage in a newly created data collection under the name “PMK-links” is also illegal. “PMK” stands for politically motivated crime. The spying on the left-wing and alternative scene in Göttingen has unfortunately a much longer tradition. As early as 1978, for instance, the Lower Saxony State Criminal Police Office infiltrated two agents into the Göttingen Working Group Against Nuclear Energy.Source: nd

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