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Germany: The number of left-wing extremist acts of violence is increasing significantly

In the previous year, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution noticed a clear radicalization in the left-wing extremist scene. There was a change in the forms of action, it was said at the time. New figures from the Interior Ministry now confirm this worrying trend.

The number of left-wing extremist acts of violence increased significantly in 2020. This emerges from a response from the Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI) to Welt am Sonntag to a request from FDP member of the Bundestag, Linda Teuteberg.

According to this, 1,359 such violent crimes were registered last year, 29 percent more than in 2019 (1052). According to the BMI, a total of 9973 left-wing extremist crimes were identified in 2020, slightly more than in the previous year (9849).

FDP internal politician Teuteberg told Welt am Sonntag: “In addition to the dynamic development in right-wing extremism and Islamism, the tendency in left-wing extremism to increasingly violent acts is also worrying. There is no ethical superiority of any variant of violent extremism, and any trivialization of criminal activity as activism is not allowed."

The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) noted a clear radicalization in parts of the violence-oriented left-wing extremist scene last year. According to an analysis by the German secret service, which Welt am Sonntag reported six months ago, “the emergence of terrorist structures in left-wing extremism” is believed to be possible. "Serious physical injuries to the victims up to possible death are accepted approvingly," it says.

There is a change in the forms of action from “mass militancy” to “clandestine small group actions”. The choice of goals is shifting "more and more often from an institutional level to a personal level". Victims are selected “specifically” and attacked in their “personal space of refuge”.

Threshold to Terrorism
In November, the case of left-wing extremist Lina E. caused a sensation in Leipzig. After her arrest, the student was flown by officers in a helicopter to Karlsruhe, where an investigating judge executed the arrest warrant. Since the end of the Red Army Faction (RAF), the Federal Prosecutor has only very rarely had left-wing extremists arrested. But the investigators consider Lina E. a member of a left-wing extremist criminal organization that rejects the "existing democratic constitutional state".

From investigative circles, Welt had learned that the group was seen on the threshold of terrorism, that it was about particularly serious attacks on political opponents. Lina E. is accused, among other things, of dangerous bodily harm. Her group is said to have carried out an attack on a meeting point of the right-wing extremist scene in Eisenach in October 2019, in which the owner of the house and guests were seriously injured with batons, irritant gas and fist blows. According to Der Tagesspiegel, the attackers were an anti-fascist group.

Two weeks ago there was another attack in the same place, this time explosives were detonated, the house was cleared and the surrounding area was cordoned off, no one was injured. The perpetrators sprayed the slogan "Fight Nazis Everyday" on the façade of the restaurant. Since New Year's Eve, perpetrators from the left-wing extremist scene have allegedly carried out three more attacks.

In Braunschweig, ten transport vehicles went up in flames at the beginning of January on the premises of the State Registration Authority (LAB). A simultaneous attack on a LAB building in Hanover failed, the incendiary devices did not ignite. Among other things, the authority is responsible for the deportation of foreign nationals who are required to leave the country. A group on the left-wing extremist website Indymedia claimed responsibility for the attacks by saying, “We attacked the murderous deportation system”.

After the attacks, State Interior Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) warned of a strong radicalization of the scene "which is developing into a terrorist structure". In Leipzig on New Year's Eve, suspected left-wing extremists destroyed seven Bundeswehr SUVs by arson and damaged others. The minister lets his house examine the ban on Antifa groups in Lower Saxony, as reported by the "taz" .

47 groups are observed
Months ago, a Die Welt evaluation of the reports from the Federal Office and State Offices for the Protection of the Constitution revealed that at least 47 of the more than 100 anti-fascist groups nationwide are now being observed by the Protection of the Constitution and classified as "extremist".

Antifa is the short form of "Antifascist Action", which is not a centrally managed organization, but consists of local groups and an environment of sympathizers. The members of the anti-fascist scene are unanimous in their more or less intense struggle against people and activities that they perceive as “fascist”.

Source: Welt
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