Germany bans far-right, pro-Nazi group, police raid homes

Anti-facists protest against a rally of the anti-immigrant Pegida movement (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the Occident) on October 26, 2020, marking the 6th anniversary of their founding, in Dresden, eastern Germany. (File/AFP)
Short Url
Updated 01 December 2020

Germany bans far-right, pro-Nazi group, police raid homes

  • The homes of 13 members of the far-right group Wolfbrigade 44 were searched in Hesse
  • The group’s goal is to re-establish a Nazi dictatorship, according to security officials

BERLIN: Police raided homes in three German states early Tuesday after the German government banned a far-right group, a spokesman for the interior ministry said.
The homes of 13 members of the far-right group Wolfbrigade 44 were searched in Hesse, Mecklenburg West-Pomerania and North Rhine-Westphalia to confiscate the group’s funds and far-right propaganda material, the German news agency dpa reported.
“Whoever fights against the basic values of our free society will get to feel the resolute reaction of our government,” Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said, according to his spokesman, Steve Alter.
The group’s goal is to re-establish a Nazi dictatorship, according to security officials. The 44 in their name stands for the fourth letter in the alphabet, DD, and is an abbreviation for Division Dirlewanger. Oskar Dirlewanger was a known Nazi war criminal and commander of a Nazi SS special unit.
The far-right group was founded in 2016. It is known for possessing illegal weapons and members have participated in far-right protests.
Earlier this year, the German government banned other far-right groups including the Combat 18 and the Nordadler, dpa reported.


Turkey and Greece resume talks on maritime disputes after five years

Updated 51 min 25 sec ago

Turkey and Greece resume talks on maritime disputes after five years

ANKARA: Turkey and Greece resumed talks aimed at addressing long-standing maritime disputes on Monday, diplomatic sources said, after months of tension in the eastern Mediterranean.
The neighboring countries, which are both members of the NATO military alliance, made little progress in 60 rounds of talks from 2002 to 2016.
Plans for resuming discussions foundered last year over Turkey’s deployment of a survey vessel in contested Mediterranean waters and disagreements over which topics to cover.
Ankara and Athens agreed this month to resume talks in Istanbul, in a test of Turkey’s hopes of improving its relations with the European Union, which has supported EU-member Greece and threatened sanctions on Turkey.
Both sides have voiced guarded optimism before the talks, though Ankara and Athens were still trading barbs in the days leading up to Monday’s meetings in Istanbul.
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said last week Greece would approach the talks with optimism but “zero naivety.” Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said he hoped the resumption of talks would herald a new era.
Despite the agreement to resume talks, Athens said on Saturday it would discuss only the demarcation of exclusive economic zones and the continental shelf in the eastern Mediterranean, and not issues of “national sovereignty.”
Ankara has said it wants the talks to cover the same topics as in the first 60 rounds, including the demilitarization of islands in the Aegean and disagreements over air space.
It was not immediately clear what the agenda of the talks was on Monday.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu held a series of talks in Brussels last week to discuss possible future steps to maintain what he called the “positive atmosphere” between Ankara and the EU since the bloc postponed imposing sanctions on Turkey until March at a December summit.