The German Ministry of the Interior has published a report on Tuesday in which it counts 370 far-right incidents since 2017 registered within the country’s security agencies.
319 of the 370 cases in the report were registered with the federal police, while the others were detected with the federal police, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, the Federal Criminal Department (BKA), Customs and the Federal Intelligence Service (BND). In most cases, disciplinary or criminal proceedings were opened, but 20% of them ended up archived.RELATED
The Minister of the Interior, Horst Seehofer has stressed that if one takes into account the high number of people who work in the security agencies, the figures are low but that “each case is a disgrace.” It is the first report of this type to be carried out and has been prepared with the collaboration of the security agencies of all the federal states.
Often times, the cases involve security force employees sharing symbols or images deemed unconstitutional, such as swastikas. Only in a few cases did the officers in question come into contact with known right-wing extremists or organized groups, or had participated in far-right acts, collects The Guardian.
“We have to see that it is a small number of cases. Which means that 99% of officials work within the framework of the Constitution. We do not have a structural problem, but each case is a shame because it affects everyone who they work in security agencies, “he said.
The president of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Thomas Haldenwang, has stated that although the cases that have been presented cannot be considered as isolated, they have also been reported by the same security organizations, which shows that they are not treated of a structural problem.
However, the 98-page report warns that “although the figures are low if you take into account the number of people who work in security agencies, there are cases that have not been discovered.”
The document stresses that when people who have received training in the use of weapons become extremists “a great danger arises for the state and for society” and that each case threatens to undermine confidence in the state and state agencies.
Since the data collection was completed in late March, more than 125 new incidents have come to light across the country. In North Rhine Westphalia (east of the country), for example, a group of about twenty policemen were discovered who were part of a chat in which they exchanged extremist messages. Also in Berlin and in two eastern states of the country, Thuringia and Saxony, new cases have appeared in recent days.
This report is produced after a series of recent revelations that have unveiled racist chat groups and other activities within the security authorities, mainly involving the police. The investigation was commissioned after several violent incidents that happened in Germany last year, including an attack on a synagogue and a kebab shop in the city of Halle by a man with anti-Semitic views and the fatal shooting of a politician who was in favor of immigration by a man of the extreme right.
The Interior Minister has appealed to members of the security agencies to denounce the cases they detect in their ranks. “Stay tuned. Actively defend our Constitution. Passive complicity is not permissible either,” he said.
This report will be followed by others dedicated to the entire public service, reports EFE, although Seehofer has reiterated its refusal to commission an independent study on racist tendencies within the police because it does not want to subject all its members to a general suspicion and because it considers that “Racism is a universal issue that affects the whole of society.”
Within the Social Democratic Party (SPD), a minority partner of the great government coalition, as well as within the Left and the Greens, there has been criticism of Seehofer for his refusal to commission a study on racism in the police.
Anti-racism activists have dismissed the minister’s analysis because 1,064 cases related to the far right have been revealed among the country’s military personnel, according to data collected separately by the MAD military secret service. Of the 1,064, 550 are being actively pursued.