Chancellor Angela Merkel on Saturday said Germany must resist neo-Nazis “without any taboos” following the killing of a local politician by a suspected right-wing extremist.
Such violence “must be resisted from the outset and without any taboos,” Merkel said during an address to the Protestant Church Congress in the western city of Dortmund.
“This is why the state is called upon (to act) at all levels and the federal government takes this very, very seriously,” said Merkel.
Her remarks came days after police arrested an alleged neo-Nazi for shooting dead Kassel city local politician Walter Luebcke — Merkel’s fellow Christan Democrat — at his home in the western town on June 2.
The 45-year-old killer has allegedly blamed his action on his anger at an influx of refugees and migrants to Germany.
Several other German politicians believed sympathetic to the migrant cause have been threatened, and that, coupled with the Luebcke shooting, prompted Merkel to speak out.
“This is not just a terrible act but also a major challenge for us to examine on all fronts where there are extreme-right tendencies,” said Merkel.
Hours before her speech, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas had warned on Twitter that “Germany has a terrorism problem.
“We have more than 12,000 violent rightwing extremists in our country,” said Maas, lamenting that 450 of them were able to stay underground “even though they are the subject of an arrest warrant.”
Maas, a Social Democrat coalition partner of Merkel, said Germans had to call out extremist behaviour for what it is and said they must “not concede a millimetre to enemies of freedom.”
Interior Minister Horst Seehofer meanwhile warned of a “very dangerous development” and said the government would be looking at ways of placing restrictions on the far right.
“This killing moves me to do everything possible to reinforce security,” Seehofer, a member of the Christian Democrats’ conservative partner the Christian Social Union, told the Funke media group in an interview.
One mooted restriction is curbing the right to express extremist views online and making them subject to legal action for “inciting hatred.”
Seehofer said Berlin would assess how constitutionally it might take even tougher measures and deprive some people of their basic rights.
“Ours is the ministry in charged of questions touching on the constitution. We shall seriously examine the possibilities,” Seehofer told Funke.
Peter Tauber, a Merkel ally and former CDU general secretary, urged that “enemies of the constitution” should be deprived of certain rights including to express their views publicly and to hold meetings.
Conservative attorney dismantles GOP arguments against impeachment: ‘Trump’s abuse threatens your freedom’
A conservative attorney knocked down Republican arguments against impeachment one by one in a viral tweet, and urged others to support the removal President Donald Trump.
Bryan Gividen, an appellate attorney from Dallas, touted his conservative bona fides by describing himself as a "pro-religious liberty, pro-life, would snort Cocaine Mitch’s judicial confirmations" if he could -- but still said he supports Trump's impeachment.
"At this point, there is no question that President Trump directed U.S. officials to withhold security funding to the Ukraine so Ukraine would investigate the Bidens," Gividen began. "That is the kind of abuse of the President’s authority we should not tolerate."
Trump turns bizarre handwritten notes into all-caps Twitter rage spasm: ‘I WANT NOTHING! I WANT NO QUID PRO QUO!’
President Donald Trump on Wednesday wrote down his impeachment inquiry talking points in sharpie marker.
While leaving the White House for a visit to Texas, Trump read his notes to reporters, but refused to take questions.
During the flight, Trump then tweeted out his notes to his 66.9 million Twitter followers.
....”I WANT NOTHING! I WANT NOTHING! I WANT NO QUID PRO QUO! TELL PRESIDENT ZELENSKY TO DO THE RIGHT THING!” Later, Ambassador Sondland said that I told him, “Good, go tell the truth!” This Witch Hunt must end NOW. So bad for our Country!
John Dean says Gordon Sondland just had his ‘John Dean moment’ by flipping on Trump: ‘The truth has come out’
Former White House aide John Dean on Wednesday compared his testimony against President Richard Nixon to the testimony of European Union Ambassador Gordon Sondland.
"This has been called by some commentators a John Dean moment," CNN host Jake Tapper noted during a break in the testimony. "And there is no person I can think of who is better qualified to weigh in on that than John Dean."
"Is he the John Dean of this impeachment inquiry?" Tapper wondered.
"His statement certainly caught the Republicans off guard," Dean replied. "They didn't pick away -- just a few little picky points."