Allegations against the Magdeburg police: anti-Semitism, quite normal

An entire department of the Saxony-Anhalt police is said to have tolerated and spread anti-Semitism. The state policy is drawing its first conclusions.

At the inauguration of a new kennel for the Saxony-Anhalt police: Interior Minister Stahlknecht Photo: Klaus-Dietmar Gabbert / dpa

LEIPZIG / BERLIN taz | In the entire Magdeburg riot police station, it is said to have been common practice since the 1990s to refer to the operator of the canteen there as “Jews”. The Saxony-Anhalt Interior Minister Holger Stahlknecht (CDU) announced on Monday.

The cases became known due to an anonymous e-mail that was received by the Burgenlandkreis police station last Friday – the anniversary of the anti-Semitic and racist terrorist attack in Halle. In this accused the: the sender: in that the “entire office” knew the circumstance and did “nothing to prevent”. “This institutional anti-Semitism has to stop,” it says in the letter.

The allegations were investigated immediately and were confirmed, said Stahlknecht. He was “affected, scared, angry and shaken” by the incidents. Last week, the Interior Minister himself was criticized for having said that the police who guarded Jewish facilities in Saxony-Anhalt were missing elsewhere.

The Central Council of Jews accused him of promoting anti-Semitism and suggested that he resign. Max Privorozki, the chairman of the Jewish community in Halle, also said that he was “really shocked” by Stahlknecht’s statement.

Similar case in the Bundeswehr

Stahlknecht himself denied responsibility and only said at a press conference that he was sorry if he had been misunderstood. The police presence to protect Jewish facilities has “top priority”.

Now the interior minister is forced to act: A special commission is to investigate the case in the Magdeburg police more closely. According to Stahlknecht, Jerzy Montag, legal policy spokesman for the Green parliamentary group, is to lead the investigation. However, internal circles denied that there were already firm agreements in place. All that was said was a question and considerations.

Montag would not be inexperienced as an expert: He was already in charge of the special investigation into the Oury Jalloh case and is currently an expert on the commission for dealing with right-wing extremism incidents in the Hessian police.

In addition to the investigation in the specific Magdeburg case, the State Ministry of the Interior is trying to draw further conclusions. The protection of the constitution, Stefan Damke, is to take the newly created post of extremism officer and set up a complaints office. In addition, external experts are to investigate the spread of anti-Semitism and racism in the state police.

Lower Saxony’s Interior Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) had already initiated a similar study. Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) has so far refused to carry out such investigations at the federal level. He claimed that there was “no structural problem” in the federal and state security authorities. Christiane Bergmann, Head of the Public Security Department in the Ministry of the Interior in Saxony-Anhalt, however, emphasized with regard to the latest case in Magdeburg: “You cannot speak of individual cases.”

A similar case became known from the German armed forces at the beginning of the year: In his annual report, the Bundestag’s armed forces commissioner reported on a non-commissioned officer who described a canteen leaseholder as a “real Jew” because of allegedly excessive prices. She received disciplinary proceedings and the outcome is unknown.

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Right-wing extremist chat group in Berlin: Scary and liberating at the same time

The more known about the right-wing extremist filth, the better. The truth is bitter, but politics can no longer avoid it.

Right structures in the police: new “individual case” now also in Berlin Photo: dpa

BERLIN taz | So now Berlin also has its right-wing extremist chat group. Like the ARD magazine Monitor Reported on Thursday, 25 police officers from a Berlin police station wrote each other messages for over three years, sometimes with blatant racist agitation. The whole field of right-wing extremist clichés was apparently served: the “large population exchange” by refugees, unchecked hatred of the left, the most primitive violent fantasies against “foreigners”. To be frank: after North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse and all the other police scandals of recent times, this should not surprise anyone. The “individual cases” are now so numerous that you can almost lose track of them.

On the one hand, this is deeply frightening: The nightmare in which people who visibly think and look different have always lived and in which the police are not your friends but the (armed and powerful) enemy is reality. And regularly. There is not just one police officer or two, so that one could legitimately speak of exceptions, as politics and police leaderships and unions always do. The error is “in the system”, as this case also shows. Even those who don’t think like their right-wing extremist colleagues shut up. Not even the chief of the troop, who apparently knew about it, has put an end to the hustle and bustle.

On the other hand, such revelations are also encouraging: after all, it was two Berlin police officers who stank the matter so much that they “leaked” the chat logs and Monitor willingly give information about the racist everyday life on their guard. So there are (after all) the democratically minded law enforcement officers – even if they wanted to remain anonymous for fear of the corps spirit of their colleagues.

And even if police scandals are usually not uncovered by internal whistleblowers but in the course of investigations: there is reason for hope. Because the more of the dirt that comes to light, the greater the willingness of people to speak about it – be they victims of racist police violence or witnesses.

Every scandal encourages those affected and witnesses to speak

At least that is how it is in the general debate about (everyday) racism and discrimination in society: The public awareness of the topic in recent months has encouraged more and more BPoC (Black and People of Color) to report on their experiences and no longer to put up with everything. And it encourages members of the white majority society to take a critical look at their own racisms and prejudices.

And with each new revelation about racist structures in the police, the moment inevitably draws nearer when politics and police leaders can no longer come up with excuses. The truth is ugly. But all of us – including the middle class, who has so far defended their law enforcement officers – must finally look their faces.

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taz research on threatening letters: Call from “NSU 2.0”

The “NSU 2.0” was more intensive and active earlier than previously known. The main suspect police officer has called for the election of the AfD.

Poster at a protest in Wiesbaden in July Photo: Arne Dedert / dpa picture alliance

FRANKFURT A.M./KIRTORF/BERLIN taz | The perpetrator or perpetrators who have sent the more than 80 “NSU 2.0” threats to date have spied out target persons more intensively than previously known. As taz research has shown, a man tried by phone in August 2018 to get private data from taz author * in Hengameh Yaghoobifarah. At the time, he phoned the taz editorial office, pretended to be a police officer and made a threat. In two later “NSU 2.0” letters, precise reference is made to this call.

At the time of the call, no threats from “NSU 2.0” were publicly known. The messages in which the phone call is mentioned were sent in October 2019 and June 2020 from the address that the investigators assign to the “NSU 2.0”. “SS-Obersturmbannführer” is given as the sender. It is a mail account with the provider Yandex, whose username is a racist swear word.

The “leader” of the “NSU 2.0”, as the sender calls himself, expresses several times in emails that Yaghoobifarah is receiving “special treatment”, that it is “our primary goal”. Yaghoobifarah has been receiving massive threats for a long time, which increased again after a column critical of the police in June 2020.

In the “NSU 2.0” mails that the taz has received, several private data of people who are not publicly known who have received threatening letters from the “NSU 2.0” are mentioned. Including an old and the current address of the Frankfurt lawyer Seda Başay-Yıldız, as the taz had reported. Başay-Yıldız received the first known threat from “NSU 2.0” by fax in August 2018. Shortly before, private data had been accessed from her on a duty computer in a Frankfurt police station.

A suspected policeman

The investigators still suspect a Frankfurt police officer to have requested the data and sent the “NSU 2.0” faxes. The suspicion that he is behind the threatening emails has not been confirmed, according to the Frankfurt prosecutor. A year ago, the public prosecutor made a request for legal assistance to Russia in order to get the traffic data of the Yandex address. According to taz information, this has not yet been answered, although the German side has followed up several times.

According to taz research, the accused policeman is policeman Johannes S. The current 31-year-old belonged to a chat group in which police officers from the 1st precinct exchanged right-wing extremist content. According to the public prosecutor’s office, intensive investigations were conducted against him from May 2019 to the end of 2019. In June 2019, the investigators searched his apartment in Frankfurt and his house in Kirtorf in Central Hesse for the second time. His communications were also monitored.

Johannes S. expressed himself politically in social networks. On Facebook, for example, shortly before the 2013 federal election, he wrote: “On the 22nd it’s a cross for the AfD …. and no, this vote is NOT given away!” When the G20 summit took place in Hamburg, he posted a “Fck Antifa “lettering, plus hashtags like #scheisslinke, #terrorvonlinks and #ingedankenbeidenkollegen. The posts are available to the taz. Johannes S. did not want to speak to the taz and did not answer any written questions.

It is unclear how the “NSU 2.0” sender obtained the current address of Başay-Yıldız. The Hessian Interior Minister Peter Beuth (CDU) said on Thursday in the plenum of the state parliament in Wiesbaden that there had been no further illegal inquiries in the police system in Hesse.

You can read the entire research on the threatening letters from the “NSU 2.0” and the suspicious police officer in the taz on the weekend of May 5th / 6th. September 2020.

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taz research on “NSU 2.0”: Are you asked for police data again?

The lawyer Seda Başay-Yıldız has been threatened by the “NSU 2.0” for two years. A new threatening mail even gives their current address.

Lawyer Seda Başay-Yıldız has been receiving threatening letters from “NSU 2.0” for more than two years Photo: Janine Schmitz / photothek / imago

FRANKFURT A. M./BERLIN taz | The perpetrator or perpetrators behind the “NSU 2.0” threats have again obtained private data from the threatened lawyer Seda Başay-Yıldız. In an email signed with “NSU 2.0 Der Führer” from the end of June, according to taz research, your current, publicly unknown address in Frankfurt is given. So there is a suspicion that personal data has been requested again in a police system.

“SS-Obersturmbannführer” is given as the sender name of the mail, it is not addressed directly to the lawyer and is available to the taz. The message was sent from the email address of the Russian provider Yandex, which, according to investigators, is used by the perpetrator (s). According to this, more than 80 threatening letters have been sent by “NSU 2.0” so far, most of them from this email address, which has a racist swear word as its user name.

Başay-Yıldız has been receiving threatening letters from “NSU 2.0” for more than two years. In the first fax to her on August 2, 2018, insults were given, her home address and the name of her daughter, who was threatened with death. The data had been called up shortly beforehand by a service computer in a Frankfurt police station. It is still being determined whether a Frankfurt police officer has requested the data and is involved in the threats.

In another fax at the end of December 2018, private data on Başay-Yıldız’s family members were again given. The investigators then assumed that these came from the same query. This cannot be the case with the current address mentioned now. It must come from a new query or from another source.

“Interior Minister Beuth is part of the problem”

Neither the Hessian State Criminal Police Office (LKA) nor the Ministry of the Interior in Wiesbaden answered the taz’s question as to whether the use of police databases was checked in this current case. The Frankfurt public prosecutor did not want to comment “for tactical reasons of investigation”. The investigators have had the mail since mid-July. The LKA and the Ministry of the Interior did not answer the question of whether Başay-Yıldız was informed that the “NSU 2.0” knew her current private address. Corresponding inquiries were made on Friday last week or on Tuesday. Başay-Yıldız himself did not want to comment when asked by the taz.

In a current email from Thursday night, the “NSU 2.0” explicitly points out the lawyer’s address change without being asked. In the response mail to a taz press request, it says that she has meanwhile moved to Frankfurt. “But it doesn’t help.” This mail was also sent to various LKA addresses in Hesse and Berlin.

For Günter Rudolph, the parliamentary managing director of the SPD parliamentary group in the Hessian state parliament, it is a “clear alarm signal” if the personal data of those concerned was recently accessed again improperly. Compared to the taz, he criticized the Hessian Interior Minister Peter Beuth (CDU): Anyone who let such crimes run for two years and only now announces further security measures has simply not recognized the problem. “Interior Minister Beuth is part of the problem, not the solution,” said Rudolph.

The domestic political spokesman for the left in the state parliament, Hermann Schaus, finds it “very frightening when a blocked address ends up at NSU 2.0”. He emphasizes: “This laissez-faire style that the investigators are displaying must be changed at full speed.”

Inquiries to police computers in connection with “NSU 2.0” letters were also given at two different police stations in Wiesbaden at the beginning of 2019 and 2020, respectively. There, the data of the cabaret artist Idil Baydar and the Hessian left-wing parliamentary group chairman Janine Wissler, who received both “NSU 2.0” threatening letters a little later, by SMS and email.

The two officers, who were logged into the service computer at the time in question, claimed that they had not requested the data. Baydar’s data was also queried from the police in Berlin in March 2019. In Hamburg, police computers were used to request data from taz columnist Hengameh Yaghoobifarah in the summer; in this case, too, according to the police, no official connection can be identified. Previously, on June 15, a police-critical column by Yaghoobifarah appeared in the taz, which sparked a heated debate.

According to taz information, several “NSU 2.0” threats have been sent from the Yandex address in the past few days; they went to Wissler, Baydar, the left-wing member of the Bundestag Martina Renner and other recipients in the police, judiciary and media .

You can read all of the research about the threatening letters from the “NSU 2.0” and the connections to the police in the taz on the weekend of 5./6. September 2020.

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Interior Committee on NSU 2.0 threatening letters: no trace of the data retrievers

69 threats related to “NSU 2.0” had been sent, said the Interior Minister of Hesse. The investigation is making little progress.

Under pressure: Hesse’s interior minister Peter Beuth (CDU) before the meeting of the interior committee Photo: dpa Pool / Arne Dedert

WIESBADEN taz | Under the sender “NSU 2.0”, significantly more hate emails and death threats have been sent than previously known. A total of 69 threatening letters had been received by public figures, institutions and the media by July 19 this year; this number was given by the Hesse Interior Minister Peter Beuth, CDU, at the special meeting of the Interior Committee of the Wiesbaden State Parliament; the sender was always the same.

Beuth confirmed that in 3 cases previously personal data of those threatened by email or fax had been retrieved from computers of the Hessian police. He was therefore “concerned and angry,” said the minister. The police and public prosecutor pressed ahead with the investigation.

However, there is apparently only a concrete suspicion against two now suspended police officers from the 1st Frankfurt police station in the case of the death threat against the lawyer Seda Başay-Yıldız. In the course of this investigation, the police came across a right-wing extremist chat group in the police in summer 2018. The situation is different in the case of threatening e-mails against left-wing politician Janine Wissler and cabaret artist İdil Baydar, before which there were data calls from computers in the 3rd and 4th police stations in Wiesbaden. The officials who were logged in at the time of the data query are only listed as witnesses by the public prosecutor.

The minister had to put up with critical questions from the opposition, especially regarding the timing and his own information policy. Cabaret artist İdil Baydar received the first threatening emails in July 2019. The Frankfurt public prosecutor’s office had been aware of data retrieval from a computer in the 4th Wiesbaden police station since October 2019 – but officers from this area were only heard as witnesses six months later. Unlike in the Yıldız case, data carriers or cell phones were neither seized nor searched.

“Top priority”

At the police station, it was common for an official to log on to the computer, but other colleagues also have access to it, said a public prosecutor’s representative. Therefore there is no initial suspicion against a specific person.

The left-wing politician Janine Wissler received threatening emails from “NSU 2.0” for the first time on February 15, 2020. Ten days later it was clear to the police that there had been illegal data retrieval in the 3rd Wiesbaden district. However, the first hearing of the witnesses did not take place until June 22, because of the corona pandemic, the prosecutor said.

The authority objected to the accusation of not being decisive enough. The head of the public prosecutor’s office, Albrecht Schreiber, assured that the investigation into the threat emails and the right chat networks would be carried out with the highest priority. Unfortunately, it was neither possible to clarify the sender of the threatening emails nor the background of the data queries from police computers, because the perpetrators used the anonymity of the Internet. After all, none of the proceedings had been stopped. Interior Minister Beuth promised to reform access rights to police computers.

SPD parliamentary group leader Nancy Faeser called the crisis management of the minister “underground”. He has always “proactively not informed” MPs and the media. Left-wing MP Hermann Schaus did not get an answer to the question why Beuth had apparently not asked for himself given the parallels to the Yıldız case.

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“NSU 2.0” threatening letter: further politicians affected

After Hessin Janine Wissler, two other left-wing MPs in Berlin received threatening letters. Again, they contain data that is not public.

Not alone affected: Janine Wissler in the Hessian state parliament with interior minister Peter Beuth Photo: Andreas Arnold / dpa

BERLIN/FRANKFURT AM MAIN taz | The current “NSU 2.0” series of threatening letters is expanding. According to the Hessian left-wing faction leader Janine Wissler, the left-wing parliamentarian Martina Renner and the left-wing faction leader in the Berlin House of Representatives Anne Helm recently received threatening letters from the same sender. Personal, publicly unknown information was also received.

Wissler had already received a first letter in mid-February, which was signed with “NSU 2.0”. It contains Nazi slogans and threats. The sender also provided personal information about the left-wing politician. Wissler then turned to the police, who found that their data had recently been accessed by a police computer in Wiesbaden.

An official has been found, denies loudly Spiegel-Information, however, the data query. According to this, other police officers did the search via his account. The interviewed officer is only listed as a “witness” in the investigation. A search of his private computer was said not to have taken place.

Left-wing politicians Renner and Helm are also affected

Wissler had already received a second one week after the first letter in February. Two more “NSU 2.0” threatening emails followed a few days ago. These were also sent to other senders in parallel, including Martina Renner and Anne Helm. All three left-wing politicians are personally addressed in the letters and a “death sentence” pronounced. Personal, publicly unknown data are also listed.

The three politicians are all known for their engagement against right-wing extremism. Wissler and Helm are currently not commenting on the threats. Renner made serious allegations to the investigators. “The LKA Hessen has so far completely failed to clarify the threat series,” she told the taz. “It is a grave failure by Interior Minister Beuth to deal only now with the death threats against committed women.”

Helm also said: “Confidence in the Hessian authorities has been permanently destroyed. Therefore, the Federal Prosecutor’s Office should take legal action. ”The contents of the threatening letters also showed that the perpetrator (s) had access to sources of sensitive data and connections to Berlin.

The LKA Hessen did not comment on the process for the time being. The Frankfurt / Main public prosecutor’s office declined to comment on the basis of the ongoing investigation. Striking: The current “NSU 2.0” threatening letters repeatedly refer to reports on investigative measures against police officers as part of the threatening series. This investigation is repeatedly criticized by the senders.

Interior Minister no longer excludes right-wing police network

Since August 2018, the Frankfurt lawyer Seda Başay-Yıldız, who represented victim families in the Munich NSU trial, has repeatedly received threatening letters from an “NSU 2.0”. They also received personal data, for example from their family members. Data from Başay-Yıldız had previously been accessed on a Frankfurt police computer. The sender has not been determined to date, the letters were apparently sent from the Darknet.

Hesse’s interior minister Peter Beuth (CDU) was angry on Thursday afternoon that in the Janine Wissler case from the LKA Hessen he was only informed about the data query by a police computer in February on Wednesday. This is “completely unacceptable” given the importance of the process. Beuth said that he had no further evidence of a right-wing network in the Hessian police. The renewed data query, however, “nourishes the suspicion” of such. The Hessian police must now make no attempt to “refute this suspicion”.

Beuth now wants to deploy a special investigator who will lead the investigation into the threatening e-mails and report directly to the state police chief. In the future, every police officer will also have to document an official reason for data queries in the police systems.

Basay-Yildiz criticized Beuth on Friday and was “amazed” by the statement by the interior minister. Unlike the Hessian LKA boss Sabine Thurau, he “never reported to me and my family”. Thurau, on the other hand, had sought personal contact and had been protecting her child, who is still under massive threat, for a year and a half, the lawyer said. “It was not looking for the public like the interior minister or other political actors who made empty promises and never came back, but actually did something.”

Unlike Martina Rennner and Anne Helm, Basay-Yildiz does not criticize the State Criminal Police Office. Despite all the structural problems, the work of Thurau and the LKA had created trust in the police, said the lawyer. This should now “not be torpedoed by Mr. Beuth for political reasons”.

Politics are alarmed

Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) Seehofer also called Wissler’s threats “completely unacceptable”. The incident must be “ruthlessly cleared up”. Left-wing party leader Bernd Riexinger has accused the authorities of insufficient protection of his party’s politicians. “I am shocked that my colleagues have never been offered police protection in the past,” he said Rheinische Post.

Green leader Annalena Baerbock demanded that independent scientists investigate anti-constitutional tendencies in the security authorities. It is not a matter of general suspicion that the vast majority of employees are “unquestionably loyal to the constitution,” said Baerbock the German press agency. But if there were always extreme right-wing incidents in the security authorities that had access to weapons and sensitive data, these activities would have to be uncovered, analyzed and consistently punished.

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Canceled study on “Racial Profiling”: poison for society

Horst Seehofer did no favor with the veto against the study. It is a slap in the face for everyone affected by racism.

Racial profiling criminalizes entire population groups Photo: Sebastian Kramer / dpa

It is simply ignorant that Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer has spoken out against a study planned by the federal government on racial profiling by the police. And the ministry’s reasoning that such a study is not necessary because “racial profiling” is already prohibited is out of touch with reality.

Civil society organizations such as the “Campaign for Victims of Racist Police Violence” have been documenting such incidents for years. In 2012, a case before the Koblenz Higher Administrative Court led the way: a student successfully sued against an occasionless police check – the court ruled that personal checks based on skin color were not compatible with the principle of equal treatment. The police officer had admitted that he had checked him because of his skin color.

It is undisputed that racial profiling exists in police practice. Only the exact extent is unclear because the research is insufficient. The study, which was recommended by the Council of Europe’s European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), would have helped to address racist discrimination by police authorities more objectively and to fill this gap.

Seehofer has done himself and the police no favor. The police would never suspect such a study. Rather, it is about laws that allow women police officers to control them on a suspicious basis – which in turn promotes racial profiling. Stopping scientific studies in this way is a slap in the face for all people in Germany who are affected by racism.

As Federal Minister of the Interior, the security of all people in this country should be important. Racial profiling is poison for this society. This practice criminalizes entire sections of the population and puts them under general suspicion.

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Right Prepper Group Nordkreuz: Customs continue to shoot in Güstrow

Due to an ammunition theft, many authorities have stopped working with a shooting range in Güstrow. But not all.

Güstrow: actually idyllic Photo: Jens Büttner / dpa

BERLIN taz | When the former SEK policeman and founder of the Prepper Group Nordkreuz Marko G. was arrested two years ago and his close connection to a shooting range in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania became known, most authorities ended the cooperation with the operator. Because this was also part of Nordkreuz at times.

But customs continue to send employees to Güstrow to shoot. This emerges from the Federal Government’s response to a small request from the left-wing parliamentary group in the Bundestag that has been submitted to the taz. “The firing range was and is used for regular shooting and operational training by customs,” wrote State Secretary Hans-Georg Engelke.

Left-wing politician Tobias Pflüger criticizes that the firing range is still used by government agencies. “This is frightening and this practice must be stopped immediately,” he told the taz. When asked by taz, the General Customs Directorate emphasized that the rented shooting range was always used alone with our own trainers.

According to the Federal Government’s response, between 2010 and 2018 officials from the Federal Criminal Police Office used the shooting range in Güstrow. Officials of the federal police – including the elite unit GSG 9 – were there more than a dozen times, several state police and foreign special forces.

As taz research had shown, the shooting range may have served as a transshipment point for ammunition, which was found in 2017 and 2019 from the former SEK policeman Marko G. A large part of the approximately 55,000 seized shots were police cartridges from at least seven federal states as well as from the Bundeswehr, customs and the federal police.

Violation of the War Weapons Control Act

Marko G. worked as a police officer as a shooting coach for civilian shooting for the company Baltic Shooters. The company boss Frank T. trained the specialist staff from home and abroad. He and at least one of his employees were also temporarily members of Nordkreuz, a group that was preparing for a “Day X” and of which two members are suspected of being terrorists.

Marko G. has since been sentenced to 21 months in prison for violating the War Weapons Control Act, the verdict is not yet final. The public prosecutor’s office in Schwerin is now investigating the complex against the staff of an arms agency. The suspicion: He should have taken the confiscated cartridges aside and be bribed by a “monetary consideration”.

It does not report whether the federal government is reviewing how ammunition from the authorities’ holdings could get to a private individual in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and whether there are disciplinary investigations into possible helpers in federal authorities. The answer only refers to the ongoing criminal investigation.

Little checked

The Güstrow case does not reveal how little controlled firing ranges are, even when special forces from the Bundeswehr, police or authorities train there. A security check of operators of private shooting ranges is not provided by law, it says. “There was also no reason to initiate a security check of the shooting range or the operator, since the workshops were initially carried out under the content and technical supervision of the State Criminal Police Office (LKA) Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and later under the patronage of the Interior Minister of the State of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.”

The police of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania have terminated the cooperation to which the federal government refers with the shooting range in 2019. There had never been a security check. The state interior ministry only informed the taz in April: “To operate a shooting range,“ trade and weapon law requirements would have to be met ”. “At the latest now, when such huge amounts of ammunition end up with Nazis as in Güstrow, this dangerous security gap has to be closed urgently,” demands Tobias Pflüger from the left-wing faction.

According to the federal government, officials from the Federal Police, BKA and customs have trained at more than 70 private shooting ranges in recent years. No information is given for the Bundeswehr.

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Saxon police and Nazis: mild punishment

Because a Saxon policeman posed for the second time in photos with neo-Nazis, he was warned. So far, no further consequences have followed.

Around 250 masked hooligans and Nazis riot in Leipzig in 2016 Photo: picture alliance

LEIPZIG taz | The Saxon police continue to see cases that indicate links to the extreme right. Already in July 2019, two officers of the Saxon riot police had to explain to their employer after a photo had appeared that showed the police officers, along with several people, who belong to the right-wing martial arts and hooligan scene.

In addition to the two officers, at least four members of the right-hand “Imperium Fight Team” can be seen. It also shows a Saxon legal trainee who most recently made headlines for a suspected swastika tattoo and is currently awaiting judgment on his involvement in the neo-Nazi attack on the Leipzig district of Connewitz in 2016. Several empire fighters were also involved in the raid at the time. The group happily posed in front of a pub in downtown Leipzig.

The photo was taken as part of a private visit to a music festival, Saxony’s Interior Minister Roland Wöller replied to a request from the state parliament. The interior minister said the officials had been verbally informed of their obligations under civil law on the basis of the photo. According to the spokeswoman for the riot police in Saxony, this reference was later made in writing.

A few months after these memories of her duties as a civil servant, another photo appeared, which was apparently taken in early March 2020 and shared by one of the people pictured on Instagram. It shows one of the two police officers again with the people with whom he has already been seen – and for whom his employer considered it necessary to remind him of his duties.

Mildest form of sanctions

The official’s Instagram profile is also marked in the picture. It seems unlikely that the previous meeting in Leipzig city center was a spontaneous meeting. The pub in front of which the picture was taken is almost 10 kilometers away from the venue of the music festival, which the two police officers visited together with the right-wing martial artists.

A spokeswoman for the riot police of Saxony said that the official was now issued a “duty-based warning of duty,” at the request of the taz. This warning is considered the mildest form of sanctions and does not count as a disciplinary measure. In the event of repeated violations of his duties, disciplinary proceedings have already been threatened, says the police spokeswoman.

It would not be the first of its kind: in 2015 it became known that a Leipzig police officer was writing friendly messages to the nationwide networked neo-Nazi Alexander Kurth. The policeman is now working as an instructor at the Leipzig Police School, a disciplinary case against him has been closed, according to a spokeswoman for the authority.

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