• theleftberlin

News round-up, 8 August 2020



GERMANY


Germany already seeing second coronavirus wave, warns doctors union

Daily cases have increased in recent weeks. Among the possible reasons are a longing of the reality before Corona and neglect in continuing preventive measures. So far, Germany has managed COVID-19 with far fewer deaths than its neighbors France and Italy, because of an effort of widespread testing together with a robust health care system. Source: DW


German Neo-Nazi On Trial Over Politician Murder Admits To Killing

A German neo-Nazi on trial admitted that he murdered pro-refugee politician Walter Luebcke. Prosecutors said he was motivated by "racism and xenophobia." S. Ernst apologized to the victim's family, saying he had carried out a cruel act. He insisted that he did not act alone but along with co-defendant M. Hartmann. Enraged by assaults of migrants against women in Cologne on New Year's Eve 2015 and the 2016 terror attack in Nice, Stephan E. started with his murder plan. During the investigation, prosecutors separately charged Ernst with attempted murder for allegedly stabbing an Iraqi asylum seeker in the back in 2016. Source: barrons


Planned US troop withdrawal 12,000 soldiers plus headquarters

In June, the USA announced the withdrawal of thousands of soldiers from Germany. The Stuttgart area will be the most affected, followed by Bavaria and the Eifel area. According to the US Secretary of Defense, a total of 11,900 soldiers stationed in Germany are to be transferred. They will be moved to Mons in Belgium, the military headquarters of NATO. Trump justified his decision by saying that Germany, as a member of NATO, was not fulfilling its obligation to invest sufficiently in defense. The German government was not informed in advance about those US government plans. The planned troop removal provoked critical reactions among Republicans, too. Source: tagesschau


BERLIN


The deniers´ Loveparade

On last Saturday, a quite bizarre demonstration happened in Berlin. Groups such as neo-Nazis and vaccination opponents gathered against the COVID-19. The organizers claimed that there were more than a million participants, but the police assumed something around 20,000 people. The march was aborted prematurely by the organizers due to the lack of hygiene measures. Among other organizations, the Berlin Alliance Against Right (BBgR) has shown strong worries because of the protest. Its spokeswoman, Élodie Arnauld, is also concerned with the openness with which right-wingers could spread their antisemitism - under the guise of civil rights. Source: nd


After the withdrawal of Senator Lompscher die LINKE in Berlin considers possible successors

Senator Katrin Lompscher (Linke) resigned, due to mistakes in her taxation in 2017 and in 2018. Now there is a passionate debate in her party about who can take over her extremely important post. The party's target date is on August 20, after the summer break. However, one thing is clear: urban development is considered vital to the party. Lompscher has, for instance, set the rent cap. Unless the courts overturn the law, rents in the capital will be frozen for five years. Among the possible names for the area there are Sebastian Scheel (Linke), the non-partisan urban researcher Andrej Holm and Caren Lay, who has made a name for herself as a rent expert. Source: nd


Two public prosecutors withdrawn from investigations into Neukölln arson

For years, a series of suspected right-wing extremist arson attacks in Berlin-Neukölln has been under investigation. Now the Attorney General's Office took over the investigation and dismissed two prosecutors. According to Prosecutor General Margarete Koppers, the prosecutors who oversaw the investigations so far are suspected of bias. By chance, an employee came across statements. Seemingly, one of the prosecutors in charge is said to have stated in a hearing "that he is close to AfD". The police attribute 72 cases to the series of right-wing extremist acts in Neukölln. Many of them were committed between the end of 2016 and mid-2017. Source: rbb


Syndikat: a pub to fall in love with

Despite all the anger and grief over the symbolic eviction of the Berlin pub institution Syndikat, at the end of its 35-year history, only one unironic feeling remains: love. For a fourteen-hour marathon of protest against a massive police force cleared a medium-sized neighbourhood pub. It uncovered the half-silk world of major owners who exploit every loophole to shamelessly assert their interests. For the fact that this eviction in Berlin could even take place under a rent-covering red-red-green state government shows how broken the real estate market is. The Syndikat was not just a place for like-minded people, but anchored in the neighborhood. Source: taz