Germany must do more to smash far-right networks, German Federal Parliament President Dr Wolfgang Schäuble has said, observing that the threat of far-right terror in the country has not been taken seriously.
“Crimes, do not happen in a vacuum but in a poisoned social climate in which resentment towards ‘otherness’ — and the most absurd conspiracy theories — are stoked,” Dr Schäuble told the lawmakers.
The killing spree in Hanau — near the city of Frankfurt — ended when the 43-year-old German gunman returned home, killing his mother before turning the pistol on himself.
Thousands joined protests against far-right violence in the wake of the attacks, with many accusing the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD), which holds 91 of 709 seats in Germany’s lower house, of having fueled resentment.
Minorities have been demonized to such an extent, that hate campaigns — and even murder — are accompanied by a rather perverse applause on social networks. With the general rise in animosity towards immigrants, religious groups etc it calls for a state of emergency and taking up of arms by the government to ensure its citizens feel safe.
While addressing a parliamentary debate on the Hanau attacks, he called for “sincerity from the state, which must admit to having underestimated the extreme right-wing danger for too long.”
Dr Schäubleb added that the decisive answer to the situation must be to uncover radical networks with all constitutional means and to smash right-wing extremist associations.
“It seemed to many people… that when you attack a Muslim, or when you attack a Jew, then it’s only against that group,” Social Democrat lawmaker Aydan Özoguz told DW. “What was really quite clearly said today here from every party — almost, except for the AfD — is that it is an attack against democracy, it is an attack against the whole of society and we have to stand together.” The state however, must get better at consistently enforcing the law.
During an emotional debate session, the AfD rejected any blame for the attack, claiming that the failure of mainstream parties had led to rising extremism.