Take action against the CDU milieu! (neue-deutschland.de)

Photo: dpa / Bernd Thissen

On Wednesday, 800 federal police officers moved out to investigate the German slaughterhouse swamp. As always, such actions happen “in the early hours of the morning.” One focus was Weißenfels in Saxony-Anhalt, where the Tönnies group maintains its second largest slaughterhouse. 20,000 pigs are processed here every day. To the chagrin of many residents, this happens in the middle of a residential area. These residents also saw the misery of migrant workers, who sometimes slept in cars during the Corona lockdown.

The state is finally taking action and drying up the slaughterhouse swamp! For a long time he was provocatively inactive. But against whom exactly is the state violence directed? Here, troops commanded by the Federal Minister of the Interior, Horst Seehofer, were set in motion. And he apparently only knows one direction: “The mother of all problems is migration.” Perhaps it has always been naive to believe that a constitutional state is neutral. That a constitutional state simply enforces law and order, regardless of the reputation and origin of the perpetrators. That the executive sets its priorities in such a way that particularly serious and frequently committed crimes are prosecuted. The CDU interior ministers Horst Seehofer and Herbert Reul (North Rhine-Westphalia) obviously deploy their forces politically and in a calculated manner in terms of media impact. If the state has to act in the Tönnies case because the public pressure is increasing, then if so in a way that can be cannibalized right-wing demagogically: against foreigners.

Elmar Wigand is the spokesman for “Action against Labor Injustice - Initiative for Democracy in Business and Business”.

Elmar Wigand is the spokesman for “Action against Labor Injustice – Initiative for Democracy in Business and Business”.

Photo: Private

Yesterday’s raid against human traffickers in the slaughterhouse swamp was directed against an aspect that the critical public has so far paid little attention to: illegal immigration from Eastern Europe. Apparently there is a smuggler’s underground that is providing people from Belarus, Ukraine and Moldova with forged papers. Apparently, the wear and tear on “human resources” from corporations like Tönnies and their bone mills is so great that supplies have long since had to be recruited outside the EU’s eastern borders. This is an astonishing finding, because in the slipped regions of the EU countries Romania and Bulgaria there should be enough misery that drives people to the dismantling assembly lines. Perhaps word got around there long ago as to what the situation of these barracked and segregated modern slaves really is. On the other hand, the Romanians are slowly beginning to no longer just tolerate their situation, but to become cheeky. They have rights, pride, and they post factory videos on social media.

It is significant that the federal police are now working at a point in the exploitation chain that is as far down as possible and as far away as possible from the CDU party donor Clemens Tönnies and his network. It would be high time to get down to business with the pig baron Tönnies. In fact, the alleged work contracts, which accounted for an estimated 80 percent of the employment relationships at Tönnies, were sham work contracts, i.e. illegal temporary employment. He is directly responsible for that. In addition, there is organized rental usury, which should already be well documented via the corona quarantine against residential complexes of migrant workers.

Why is there no action taken here? Because it concerns a) German perpetrators, clients and profiteers – for example East Westphalian homeowners who have made a profit from the last scrap real estate, and b) well-networked wealthy to super-rich who are clients of the CDU. In order to balance the sense of justice of a critical public, it must finally be ascertained from top to bottom. If the authorities worked reasonably hard, Clemens Tönnies would probably go to jail. And be it – like the Chicago mafia boss Al Capone back then – because of something as banal as tax evasion.

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Take action against the CDU milieu! (neue-deutschland.de)

Photo: dpa / Bernd Thissen

On Wednesday, 800 federal police officers moved out to investigate the German slaughterhouse swamp. As always, such actions happen “in the early hours of the morning.” One focus was Weißenfels in Saxony-Anhalt, where the Tönnies group maintains its second largest slaughterhouse. 20,000 pigs are processed here every day. To the chagrin of many residents, this happens in the middle of a residential area. These residents also saw the misery of migrant workers, who sometimes slept in cars during the Corona lockdown.

The state is finally taking action and drying up the slaughterhouse swamp! For a long time he was provocatively inactive. But against whom exactly is the state violence directed? Here, troops commanded by the Federal Minister of the Interior, Horst Seehofer, were set in motion. And he apparently only knows one direction: “The mother of all problems is migration.” Perhaps it has always been naive to believe that a constitutional state is neutral. That a constitutional state simply enforces law and order, regardless of the reputation and origin of the perpetrators. That the executive sets its priorities in such a way that particularly serious and frequently committed crimes are prosecuted. The CDU interior ministers Horst Seehofer and Herbert Reul (North Rhine-Westphalia) obviously deploy their forces politically and in a calculated manner in terms of media impact. If the state has to act in the Tönnies case because the public pressure is increasing, then if so in a way that can be cannibalized right-wing demagogically: against foreigners.

Elmar Wigand is the spokesman for “Action against Labor Injustice - Initiative for Democracy in Business and Business”.

Elmar Wigand is the spokesman for “Action against Labor Injustice – Initiative for Democracy in Business and Business”.

Photo: Private

Yesterday’s raid against human traffickers in the slaughterhouse swamp was directed against an aspect that the critical public has so far paid little attention to: illegal immigration from Eastern Europe. Apparently there is a smuggler’s underground that is providing people from Belarus, Ukraine and Moldova with forged papers. Apparently, the wear and tear on “human resources” from corporations like Tönnies and their bone mills is so great that supplies have long since had to be recruited outside the EU’s eastern borders. This is an astonishing finding, because in the slipped regions of the EU countries Romania and Bulgaria there should be enough misery that drives people to the dismantling assembly lines. Perhaps word got around there long ago as to what the situation of these barracked and segregated modern slaves really is. On the other hand, the Romanians are slowly beginning to no longer just tolerate their situation, but to become cheeky. They have rights, pride, and they post factory videos on social media.

It is significant that the federal police are now working at a point in the exploitation chain that is as far down as possible and as far away as possible from the CDU party donor Clemens Tönnies and his network. It would be high time to get down to business with the pig baron Tönnies. In fact, the alleged work contracts, which accounted for an estimated 80 percent of the employment relationships at Tönnies, were sham work contracts, i.e. illegal temporary employment. He is directly responsible for that. In addition, there is organized rental usury, which should already be well documented via the corona quarantine against residential complexes of migrant workers.

Why is there no action taken here? Because it concerns a) German perpetrators, clients and profiteers – for example East Westphalian homeowners who have made a profit from the last scrap real estate, and b) well-networked wealthy to super-rich who are clients of the CDU. In order to balance the sense of justice of a critical public, it must finally be ascertained from top to bottom. If the authorities worked reasonably hard, Clemens Tönnies would probably go to jail. And be it – like the Chicago mafia boss Al Capone back then – because of something as banal as tax evasion.

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Germany still on the front line for welcoming migrants

Angela Merkel continues to open the doors to refugees, particularly from the camps in Greece, but is more cautious than in 2015 to defuse criticism from the AfD.

Syrian and Iraqi migrants take pictures with Angela Merkel on September 10, 2015 in Berlin.
Syrian and Iraqi migrants take their picture with Angela Merkel on September 10, 2015 in Berlin. Fabrizio Bensch/REUTERS

Correspondent in Berlin

Of all European countries, Germany is the one that issues the most asylum rights – 116,000 in 2018 – and takes in the most minor, sick or unaccompanied children. Again on September 15, the Merkel government, at the forefront of the Twenty-Seven, announced that it would receive 1,553 refugees from five Greek islands. But for many, across the Rhine, the account is not there.

Sunday, under the slogan “there is fire and we have room ”, several thousand people marched in Berlin, Cologne, Munich and Leipzig to demand a greater participation of their country in the humanitarian crisis created by the fire of the Moria camp. In the capital alone, 5,000 had gathered in the multicultural district of Moabit, where the aunt of Alan Kurdi, the drowned Syrian boy who had become the emblem of the tragedy, urged the Twenty-Seven to “Do not close your eyes and turn your back” to migrants stranded on European coasts. “We must

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After the fire in Moria: examination at the external border

The refugees on Lesbos are to be accommodated in a new camp. Possibly a pilot project for a new EU migration policy.

On the way to the new warehouse Photo: ap / dpa

LESBOS / HEIDELBERG taz | As if they had come straight from a war, hundreds of refugees move to the gate of the new camp on Friday morning on Lesbos, which is a few kilometers outside the island’s capital. They have bundles with them, bags, blankets and sleeping mats, some drag their belongings in garbage cans behind them, others have tied them onto old fruit pallets that they push across the asphalt. Some can only walk with crutches or sticks, others sit in wheelchairs.

Special units of the Greek police had already started on Thursday to round up the people on the streets where they had been waiting since the fire in the Moria camp. The police officers shout “move”, they wear white protective suits and sunglasses.

After over a week with far too little water, food and sleep, many of the refugees are completely exhausted and dehydrated, they lean on their bundles while they wait to be admitted in front of the camp. In the surrounding fields they wash themselves on pipes that transport sewage towards the sea.

The riot and protests of the past few days have given way to an exhausted calm.

According to the latest information from the authorities, there should now be space for 5,000 people in the camp, in tents that the military has set up. 5,000, however, had already moved into the camp on an old shooting range by Thursday evening. 1,000 were waiting in front of the entrance on Friday morning. There are still around 12,000 refugees on the island. Many of them will have to sleep on the floor for a while in the new camp.

The nuclear debate will pick up speed again at the end of September, when the plans for a nuclear repository will be presented. It is often kept secret: A second, significantly larger warehouse for radiation waste is to be built at the same location. Read more in the taz on the weekend of 19./20. September. Also: A Syrian family wants to build their own goat farm in Baden-Württemberg – but then everything goes wrong. And: Franz Müntefering in conversation about old age. Always from Saturday at the kiosk, in the eKiosk or with a practical weekend subscription. And around the clock on Facebook and Twitter.

The press is banned from the site, as are lawyers, and it is still unclear whether the people who enter the camp will be allowed out. Journalists who are in the vicinity are repeatedly scared away by the police. From the surrounding slopes you can watch people standing in long lines. Water is distributed rationed in bottles. Excavators level the parched bushland, white tents with a blue UN logo are set up. It’s still hotter than 30 degrees, but there’s no cooling. There are no showers and the sea, which is only a few meters away, is inaccessible: the access is blocked with barbed wire.

What is there: A new police station in the camp. 300 officers were transferred there, the police leadership in Athens sent a high-ranking officer as commanding officer.

Everyone who comes to the new warehouse is tested for corona. 150 Covid 19 cases had been discovered by Friday morning. There should be more: As in Moria, it is completely impossible to keep your distance in the new tent camp. The infected are placed in a quarantine area. They received medical help, said UNHCR spokeswoman Shabia Mantoo.

Refusal of entry

Around 4,000 refugees are still in the hills around the burned down camp or at a roadblock near the island’s capital. They do not want to go to the new camp and fear that they will be locked up there permanently. And the residents are also dissatisfied with the development: The regional council of the North Aegean is considering calling a general strike against the new camp. He demands that all former inmates of Moria be removed from the island. But that’s not what it looks like. In Germany, the government coalition has only agreed to accept 1,553 more refugees from the Greek islands, and “100 to 150” unaccompanied minors from Moria are to be accepted here.

The fire in the Moria camp could, however, have cleared the way for a profound change in the European asylum system, which the German government in particular has been trying to push for some time.

In Berlin, Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) called for a new European asylum system on Wednesday. In future, it should be decided at the external border who is in need of protection, and those in need of protection should then be distributed, said Seehofer in the Bundestag. Two thirds of asylum seekers would not be able to enter the country in the first place. “And it makes a difference whether I have a million to distribute in Europe or two or three hundred thousand,” he said. When asked whether he wanted “the asylum procedures no longer to take place in Germany, but rather all in the hotspots themselves, so that only those who are recognized are distributed”, Seehofer said: “The latter is our goal.”

The new camp on Lesbos could become a pilot project for this.

Seehofer had this suggestion scattered last November. The European asylum system should be “reoriented”, it said in a paper by his ministry, which is a kind of timetable for the German EU Council Presidency, which runs until the end of the year. The core of the concept is “binding preliminary reviews” of asylum applications at the external borders in “closed centers”, ie internment facilities. Anyone who submits an unfounded asylum application – for example because of entry from a safe third country, incorrect information about their identity or for other reasons – should not be allowed to enter the country at all, according to the paper.

The camps would thus have a kind of extraterritorial character. “Refusal of entry means return,” it continues. “Frontex has to help with this.” In other words: Anyone who is screened out during the preliminary examination should be deported directly. An EU asylum authority, which has yet to be established, called the “Europan Union Agency for Asylum”, is to decide in which EU country the actual asylum procedure for the rest of the population will be carried out.

“We are abolishing Dublin”

This authority is likely to emerge from an upgrading of the existing European Asylum Support Office EASO, based in Malta. Its spokesman knows about the plans, he doesn’t want to say anything about it. “That is all decided by politics,” he says. But if there are to be “preliminary checks” of asylum applications in the future, “then we would of course be involved”.

The whole thing raises a number of completely unanswered questions, on which the Federal Ministry of the Interior has kept a low profile, even in discussions with NGOs. Because EASO is not allowed – at least on the basis of its current mandate – to make any decisions about who is granted asylum or who is admitted to a procedure. Nor is it clear how refugees can legally defend themselves against a rejection in such a preliminary examination. And what about those who can be rejected but not deported at all? “None of this can be done with previous EU law,” says Franziska Vilmar, asylum expert at Amnesty International.

It is unclear how refugees can defend themselves against rejection

“Castles in the air”, says the lawyer Robert Nestler from the NGO Equal Rights Beyond Borders about the plans for the preliminary checks in camps at the external borders. “Without changing an extremely large number of laws, you will not be able to avoid a regular Greek asylum procedure in such centers in the future either.”

But the EU could not let that stop it. On Wednesday and Thursday, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen presented her migration agenda. The reform package that was actually announced for May is intended to harmonize EU asylum policy more closely – and also to abolish the biggest conflict factor: the Dublin regulation. This stipulates that the states at the external borders are essentially responsible for the incoming refugees. This had repeatedly led to violent disputes within the Union. For years the EU has been working unsuccessfully on a possible reform. Last Wednesday, von der Leyen made a surprisingly clear statement: “We are abolishing Dublin.” Seehofer’s model of preliminary tests would fit into this. Because those who pass these should be distributed to other states. That would relieve the external border states.

“Yes, this is impossible with current EU law. But they will change the law to make it possible, ”says Amandine Bach, migration expert from the Left Group in the EU Parliament. She sees preliminary checks at the external borders as a “central element” of von der Leyen’s migration agenda. A draft of the agenda was punctured in April. “This makes it clear that the Schengen Borders Code, the EASO Regulation and other laws should be changed in order to be able to introduce the model,” says Bach. Entry should only be completed when the examination has shown that an asylum application has a chance of success.

All other refugees are treated as if they had never been there and are deported again before they have even officially entered the EU.

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Racism in the police: Seehofer continues to reject the study

After the right-wing extremism scandal with the police in North Rhine-Westphalia, Horst Seehofer rejects a study on racist prejudice. The SPD criticizes that.

Doesn’t think a study on racist prejudice in the police is necessary: ​​Horst Seehofer Photo: dpa

BERLIN afp / epd | Despite the right-wing extremism scandal among the police in North Rhine-Westphalia, Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) rejects, according to a report by Süddeutsche Zeitung on Friday a study on racist prejudice among the police continued.

“This process at the police in North Rhine-Westphalia hurts,” said Seehofer SZ. But he is convinced “that the overwhelming majority of our police officers reject such machinations”.

This majority stands “beyond any doubt about our free democratic basic order,” said the minister. The protection of the constitution will “present a report on this topic at the end of September”. However, this status report on right-wing extremism in the public service was planned for a long time, regardless of current developments.

The chairman of the conference of interior ministers, Thuringia’s head of department Georg Maier (SPD), promised a study on racism in the police in the SPD-ruled countries. “It is unbearable that such networks exist,” Maier told dem Editorial network Germany: “We now have to take uncompromising and consistent action against it.”

Georg Maier (SPD), chairman of the conference of interior ministers

“The sheer number of individual cases is slowly becoming too much”

This includes exhausting all criminal and disciplinary options, said Maier. “There must not be the slightest doubt that police officers operate on the basis of the free and democratic basic order,” he added.

The SPD interior ministers are in agreement that they want to conduct a study on the allegation of racism in the police – and if necessary alone. “The sheer number of individual cases is slowly becoming too much,” said Maier.

“We strongly advocate intensifying research in this field,” said the SPD interior expert in the Bundestag, Lars Castellucci SZ. Nobody questions an entire profession because of individual incidents.

“Recognize attitude patterns early on”

The large majority in the police are constitutional, he also emphasized. It is all the more important, however, “to recognize early on whether there are attitude patterns and prejudices among employees of the security authorities”. There is also still a lack of intercultural competence in authorities.

Against 30 police officers, mostly from the Essen police headquarters, allegations are made of right-wing extremist activities. All 30 have been suspended from work, according to the Interior Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia, Herbert Reul (CDU), around 14 are subject to disciplinary proceedings with the aim of removing them from service, and around 12 are under criminal investigation.

In the summer, Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) rejected a study on racism among the German police in view of the Black Lives Matter movement originating from the USA. His departmental colleagues from the Union in the federal states largely reject calls for a racism study.

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More right than the police allow (neue-deutschland.de)

Until recently, the assumption that the police might have a problem with right-wing extremists was just as absurd as the assumption that shackled asylum seekers could set themselves on fire with a lighter in a prison cell. But after the last raid by and among police officers in North Rhine-Westphalia, it is clear that one or the other brown sheep could frolic among police officers.

Certainly, one must not prejudge anyone, because the evidence is still very thin. According to all that has been heard so far, among other things Hitler pictures were shared in chat groups. But if the mere publication of portraits of Hitler would be a criminal offense, then no “Spiegel” employee would be likely to be at large. You have to be very precise and meticulous when evaluating the chat history. You should also pay attention to the context! Police officers in particular are notorious for their ambiguous meta-level humor.

Andreas Koristka is editor of the satirical magazine »Eulenspiegel«.

Photo: nd / Camay Sungu

Could one or the other statement, which is ostensibly right-wing extremist, simply be a satirical distortion? Does police chief Max Mustermann really write that one should gass up all Kanaks, or is it rather a fictional figure he has devised that is supposed to shake up, provoke and stimulate thought? So the real question is: what did the cops want to express? Not every “Sieg Heil!” Is always meant as it appears at first glance, and a swastika can also have a completely new meaning next to a puke smiley. The evaluation of the chat history is therefore not only a matter for the public prosecutor’s office, but also one of literary studies.

But even if it should ultimately emerge that the content of the blown chat groups was only solid right-wing radicalism – that would not prove anything! The Minister of the Interior of North Rhine-Westphalia, Herbert Reul, stated that one could no longer speak only of “individual cases”. But it is still not enough to start with a structural problem.

This finding helps when considering the situation. What is certain is that most officials have never smacked into the records of supposedly leftists and then sent them death threats by letter. And even if this happens now and then, one cannot speak of a structural problem in this context. Strictly speaking, this would only exist if the police had been directly subordinated to a newly appointed “Reichsführer SS”. Everything else is unstructural pipifax. You have to do a little something against him, but you can’t subordinate other serious problems to him. Or to put it another way: The fight against extremists in the police force must not be limited to the right.

Who would be served if Nazis were fought hard, but those officials who distribute Mao Bibles or organize K-groups in their spare time were left completely undisturbed? Well, for the moment everything seems to be under control in this regard and the vast majority of officials do not sympathize with autonomous squatters. But the situation can change quickly. Resist the beginnings! History teaches us that a socialist revolution must never again emanate from German patrol cars! This is not the only reason why Horst Seehofer would do well to leave the guard in the village and continue to oppose a racism study by the police. You have to trust the officials sometimes. They won’t be more racist than Horst Seehofer himself.

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Consequences of the NRW police scandal: a structural problem?

To this day, the interior ministers have refused to conduct a study on extremism in the police. The NRW affair, however, gives weight to the demand.

Now wants to clarify: North Rhine-Westphalia Interior Minister Herbert Reul Photo: Rolf Vennenberg / dpa

DÜSSELDORF / BERLIN taz | Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU) spoke on Thursday in the North Rhine-Westphalia state parliament of a “dimension and abomination that I did not think possible”. Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) also let his spokesman speak of a “shame”. And BKA President Holger Münch admitted that it was about “incidents that considerably shake confidence in the police”.

The question is: what follows from this?

We are talking about the NRW police scandal. 29 police officers were suspended because they were part of right-wing extremist Whatsapp chat groups, some of which had existed since 2012. Almost all of the victims belonged to the Essen Police Headquarters, a service group in Mülheim was completely released, including the service group leader. On Thursday, Reul spoke of another suspended officer, also from the Mülheim group.

The consequences are now being discussed nationwide. And the affair could get worse. Because so far the investigators only had the phone of one officer who started the investigation. But since Wednesday they have been evaluating 43 phones, 18 SIM cards, 21 USB sticks, 20 hard drives, 9 tablets and 9 PCs. A decorative weapon and small amounts of narcotics were also found.

Do we need nationwide consequences?

Reul has already installed a special representative for right-wing extremist tendencies in the police, the previous Vice-Constitutional Protection Officer Uwe Reichel-Offermann. This should now work out a picture of the situation and prevention recommendations. But is that enough? How could it be that no one in the police reported the chat groups for years? And isn’t there a need for supra-regional measures?

Reul admits that one can no longer speak of individual cases. Seehofer’s spokesman also said: “We’re not talking about individuals.” Right-wing extremist chat groups of Hessian police officers became known as early as the end of 2018 – after threatening faxes to the lawyer Seda Başay-Yıldız. This triggered 38 criminal and disciplinary proceedings. A right-wing prepper network in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania had already been exposed beforehand, which created lists of enemies and in which police officers and soldiers took part. In Lahr, Baden-Württemberg, seven police students who exchanged right-wing extremist chats were suspended. And in North Rhine-Westphalia a police employee from Hamm who is said to be part of the right-wing terror group “Group S.” was arrested in March.

The demand for an independent nationwide investigation into right-wing extremist attitudes of police officers has therefore been in the air for some time. Greens, leftists and parts of the SPD are now calling for this again. Sebastian Fiedler, chairman of the Association of German Criminal Investigators, also declared it overdue to “let scientists join our ranks”. Seehofer and other interior ministers, including Reul, have so far blocked such a study, as well as one on racial profiling.

The protection of the constitution is fighting with a picture of the situation

Instead, Seehofer recently referred to a situation report on extremism in the security authorities, which the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution is currently working on. After repeated postponements, this should now be ready at the end of September. The creation showed difficulties: Which incidents are even listed? Are suspicious cases already counting or are disciplinary proceedings just completed?

According to ARD The deliveries from the countries were initially so meager that the constitutional protection chief Thomas Haldenwang demanded additional deliveries, including suspected cases. NRW is said to have only submitted 12 cases. A spokeswoman for Reuls said that the current 30 police cases are currently being agreed with the Federal Office.

The criminologist Tobias Singelnstein nevertheless considers an independent scientific study on right-wing extremist attitudes in the police to be “absolutely necessary”. “We finally need reliable figures on how big the problem is. The structural character of the problem has not yet been recognized. ”For Singelnstein, the situation report by the Office for the Protection of the Constitution is not sufficient. “The Office for the Protection of the Constitution has not been able to collect the numbers for years and it is not the right institution.”

“Those who remain silent are complicit”

Left and Greens are also calling for independent complaints offices for police incidents. Singelnstein also advocates a new police culture. If no one reported the right-wing extremist chats, there was obviously no clear internal demarcation. “A culture is needed in which the democratic self-image is actually lived.” On Thursday, Reul also confirmed that the police had a “posture problem” in parts: For reasons of comradeship, misconduct is kept silent. But: “Anyone who remains silent is complicit.”

In fact, there were early indications of right-wing ideas in Essen – even if Police President Frank Richter was surprised and stunned on Wednesday. According to the anti-fascist alliance “Essen is standing across”, left-wing rallies have been bullied for months, unlike right-wing marches. In addition, officials had become racially conspicuous. When the alliance named this, there was: a criminal complaint. “The fact that there is a problem within the Essen police authority seems blatant to us,” explained the initiative.

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Public service: Highly indebted mayors want to pay more because of Corona

DThe first scan between the representatives of the employers and the employees in the collective bargaining round in the public service on September 1st apparently did not go as Herne’s Mayor Frank Dudda had imagined. The SPD politician, who was just confirmed in office with more than 60 percent of the votes in the local elections in North Rhine-Westphalia, wanted to clarify something.

“Our employees do their work tirelessly and with great dedication, at unusual times, in other areas of responsibility and combined with many hours of extra work,” wrote Dudda in a letter to the employers’ chief negotiator, Ulrich Mädge. This was followed by a sentence that made people sit up and take notice: the employees deserved “our recognition and support, including in financial terms.”

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That doesn’t happen very often: A Lord Mayor of a city in the Ruhr area with 150,000 inhabitants, which is one of the most heavily indebted municipalities in North Rhine-Westphalia, and an employer with more than 3,000 employees, speaks out in favor of that he does not want to skimp this year – not despite, but because of the Corona crisis.

In his letter of September 2, he can also refer to a similar letter from his colleague Bernd Tischler from Bottrop. At the end of July, Tischler had appealed to Mädge to work towards a collective bargaining agreement that “also documents the public service employees that their work is recognized financially”.

Massive financial problems due to the corona crisis

Lord Mayor Tischler also has the SPD party book; he was also in the local election campaign in North Rhine-Westphalia when he wrote the letter to Mägde, the president of the Association of Local Employers’ Associations (VKA).

Hard-hitting negotiators don’t necessarily go down well. But the two letters make it clear in any case how complicated the collective bargaining negotiations are on the income of the approximately 2.4 million federal and local government employees who are going into the second round this weekend.

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Some of the municipalities have massive financial problems due to the Corona crisis, on the other hand, the union can use emotional images from the spring to advertise its demand for an average of almost five percent more salary.

At that time, people in the public service, in hospitals, care facilities and health authorities also clapped every evening. Small incomes should increase by at least 150 euros. In the east there should also be an adjustment of the weekly working time to 39 hours in the west, currently there are 40 hours. Further relief for employees, for example through additional days off, is also being discussed.

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Ulrich Mädge does not want to be put off by the letters from the two SPD mayors or the reference to the “Corona heroes”. He considers the demands of the workers to be excessive, simply inappropriate. “Appreciation is not always shown through wage increases, but also through a secure job,” he told WELT.

Nobody in the public sector should fear becoming unemployed, unlike in the private sector, where many feared losing their jobs because of the unprecedented crisis.

In addition, it is also part of the truth, according to Mädge, who is also Lord Mayor of the Hanseatic City of Lüneburg and also a member of the SPD, that not all employee groups in the public service were equally heavily burdened during the lockdown.

Warning strikes threaten

“Some of them did not do any work at all, as they were released from work with full pay. Others received 95 percent of their net wages based on our collective agreement on short-time work. We have to take all that into account, ”said Mädge.

And then you have to see that the municipalities can only distribute what they actually have. This is not much due to the enormous drop in business tax among the municipalities and the weeks-long closings of individual municipal institutions and companies.

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The VKA also refers to the “existence-threatening situation” in the airport area, where income is missing and around 80 percent of employees are on short-time work. From the employer’s point of view, losses are also inevitable at the savings banks. After all, these have been in a phase of low interest rates and declining operating results for years. It is therefore imperative that they talk about their salaries of more than 14 months “; these are no longer up to date.

The unions strongly oppose this. “We need skilled workers and we have to take demographic developments into account. There are currently no ideas from employers, ”said the chairman of the dbb civil servants’ association, Ulrich Silberbach.

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End of the “peace obligation”

He announced that he would massively increase the pressure if the employers do not approach each other. Major warning strikes threaten. That is always difficult because it primarily affects the citizens. “But when it comes to that, we will make sure that people recognize who is really responsible,” said Silberbach.

In addition to VKA and dbb, the Ver.di union is involved in the negotiations in Potsdam. Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) is also at the table. Negotiations are initially for 2.3 million employees. From the perspective of the unions, the result should then be transferred to the more than 200,000 civil servants.

The third round of negotiations is scheduled for October 22nd and 23rd. It is now a matter of reaching agreement. Not only between employees and employers, but also among the ranks of the SPD mayors.

“Short-time work is very, very expensive, but mass unemployment would be immensely more expensive”

Germany’s companies should also be able to send employees into short-time work more easily because of the Corona crisis. The cabinet gave the green light for the Employment Protection Act. Labor Minister Heil and Finance Minister Scholz explain the details here.

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Moria refugees: Seehofer disappointed in Austria – politics

Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer has criticized Austria’s attitude in dealing with refugees on the Greek islands. “I am disappointed with the attitude of our Austrian neighbors not to take part in accepting a manageable number of people in need of protection from Greece,” said the CSU politician Spiegel. “In such a situation, Europe has to show its unity. If we do nothing, we will strengthen the political margins.”

After the fire in the Moria refugee camp on Lesvos, Germany agreed to take in another 1,553 people, especially families with children, after up to 150 unaccompanied young people.

In the foreseeable future, all EU states would have to participate in a solution to the refugee issue, demanded Seehofer: “Anyone who does not show solidarity in migration policy cannot claim solidarity elsewhere either.”

According to the Federal Ministry of the Interior, a total of ten EU countries and Switzerland are taking part in the admission of a total of 400 unaccompanied young people. In addition, only Germany has so far agreed to take in more people.

The ÖVP of Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, which is clearly tending to the right in foreigner policy, has been the government in Vienna with the Greens since the beginning of 2020. While the smaller green coalition partner has spoken out in favor of accepting refugee children from Moria, Kurz categorically rejects such a step. The government in Vienna, however, sent an airplane with 55 tons of relief supplies for Moria to Athens. Kurz ‘ÖVP is part of the European People’s Party, which also includes the CDU and Seehofer’s CSU.

Holocaust survivors demand the admission of Moria refugees

Previously, Holocaust survivors had asked the “Dachau camp community” to accept refugees from the burned down camp in Moria. You should be allowed to leave for Germany immediately, the board of directors around the former concentration camp inmate Ernst Grube said on Thursday.

Since 1993, more than 40,000 people have died fleeing war, persecution and threats to their lives. They all tried to find a safe haven in Europe. But the EU and the federal government did “nothing essential” to remedy the situation, said Grube.

The contemporary witness, born in Munich in 1932, was persecuted in Nazi Germany because of his Jewish mother and liberated from the Theresienstadt concentration camp in 1945.

The Dachau camp community now also demanded the closure of the camps on the EU’s external border and in Greece as well as decentralized accommodation and care for the refugees. Germany in particular must take responsibility and accept those seeking protection.

Remembering 1938 when it came to Jews from Germany and Austria

The camp community also remembered the Évian conference in 1938, at which representatives from 32 countries and 24 aid organizations discussed the problem of the rapidly increasing refugee numbers of Jews from Germany and Austria, which was already incorporated into the “Third Reich”. “The result was almost zero. Tenor of the states: We are not a country of immigration, we could be confronted with problems,” said Grube, according to the announcement.

The arguments of then and now politicians were alike. Hundreds of thousands of people could have been saved during the Nazi era. “Instead, most of the people who dared to flee were arrested at the borders and sent back to the Nazi regime. The path to the Holocaust also has this prehistory.”

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Police: Seehofer stands up against racism study – politics

Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) was dismayed by right-wing extremist activities in the North Rhine-Westphalian police. He still rejects a study on racist prejudice among the police. “This process with the police in North Rhine-Westphalia hurts,” said Seehofer Süddeutsche Zeitung. NRW Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU) rightly takes rigorous action. “I am convinced that the overwhelming majority of our police officers reject such machinations and unequivocally stand by our free and democratic basic order,” said the minister. The protection of the constitution will “present a report on this issue at the end of September”. The situation report on right-wing extremism in the public service was ordered months ago. It has nothing to do with the current investigation.

Five right-wing extremist chat groups were uncovered in North Rhine-Westphalia, most of which are said to include police officers from Mülheim an der Ruhr. They are said to have sent pictures of Hitler and the fictional representation of a refugee in a gas chamber. 29 officers were suspended from duty on Wednesday. Another officer came on Thursday. “I did not consider the dimension and these abominations to be possible,” said NRW Interior Minister Reul on Thursday in the state parliament. Incidents such as in Hagen, Hamm, Gelsenkirchen and the chat groups that have now been exposed made it clear: “Apparently we have not recognized everything, perhaps even underestimated the dimensions.”

Dozens of police officers are also being investigated in Hessen on suspicion of right-wing extremist agitation. In 2019, a chat group was discovered in Bavaria that allegedly shared a threat against Muslims. Suspected extremism cases by the police also came to light in Berlin, Schleswig-Holstein and Saxony.

“We strongly advocate intensifying research in this field,” said the SPD interior expert in the Bundestag, Lars Castellucci, of the SZ. Nobody questions an entire profession because of individual incidents. The large majority in the police are constitutional. “All the more important it is to recognize at an early stage whether there are attitude patterns and prejudices among employees of the security authorities, “says Castellucci. Intercultural competence is lacking in authorities.

So far, Seehofer has refused to commission a study on racial profiling, i.e. on prohibited police controls based only on appearance. First of all, he warned of a general suspicion against police officers. Now it is said that concentrating only on the police is not enough. In the cabinet committee against right-wing extremism and racism, migrant organizations recently called for an investigation into discrimination by police officers, as well as in the search for housing and jobs. It is conceivable that Seehofer would agree to such a more general project.

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