Federal Interior Minister Faeser wants to tighten gun laws. Meanwhile, the Berlin fire brigade is taking stock after discussions with firefighters who were deployed in Berlin.
After the New Year’s Eve riots with attacks on police officers and firefighters, Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) wants to tighten gun laws.
A permit is required for the purchase of alarm guns. These played a major role on New Year’s Eve, but were “not a harmless instrument,” said Faeser during a visit to the fire department in Berlin-Neukölln. “It’s a weapon. You need a permit for that,” emphasized the Interior Minister. “I think this tightening is an important signal.”
Before the riots on New Year’s Eve, Faeser had spoken out in favor of tightening gun laws and is now hoping for the support of the Conference of Interior Ministers (IMK). Berlin’s Interior Senator Iris Spranger (SPD) had already announced as the new chairwoman that she would bring up the topic there.
Spranger demands consequences both in Berlin and in the federal government. “Because we don’t just have this phenomenon in Berlin, even if people from the outside like to look at Berlin now,” said the new chairwoman of the conference of interior ministers.
“We can already introduce bodycams and dashcams, we can do that in Berlin,” said Spranger. But there are also federal laws, and she wants to get to them as well. “The weapons law could not have been changed in Berlin,” emphasized Spranger. “What Berlin can do, we will do. And what we can do in the federal government, we will of course also discuss among the interior ministers,” said Spranger.
Fire brigade: Targeted barricades during New Year’s Eve riots in Berlin
On the night of New Year’s Day, police officers and firefighters were attacked in several cities, including with firecrackers and rockets. The attacks were particularly violent in some areas of Berlin. According to the Berlin fire brigade, barricades were erected in at least 20 cases and emergency services were attacked. That is the current status after discussions with firefighters from the night, said fire department spokesman Thomas Kirstein.
Even experienced firefighters reported aggressiveness and violence that they had never experienced before. “We had to experience a whole new intensity of the attacks,” said Kirstein. The emergency services were lured into ambushes. Volunteer firefighters were also affected.
During the operations of the fire brigade, 15 rescuers were injured. Kirstein explained that nothing has changed in this number, which was already mentioned on New Year’s Day.
Giffey: Rethinking of the judiciary needed – quick reaction to criminal offenses
Berlin’s Governing Mayor Franziska Giffey (SPD) believes that the judiciary needs to rethink the violence against children and young people. It is important to punish crimes quickly and consistently, especially in the case of young people who commit multiple crimes, said Giffey, who also visited the Neukölln fire station with Faeser. The question is: “How much do we do to ensure that the punishment follows immediately. That young offenders still know what they are being sentenced for.”
Giffey acknowledged that the issue of expeditious criminal justice procedures is not new. However, Giffey says that it has been somewhat neglected in recent years. “I think we need to get back there.”
The SPD politician recalled the commitment of the Berlin youth judge Kirsten Heisig, who died in 2012. The so-called Neukölln model goes back to their intention, the aim of which is the rapid punishment of minor offenses by young offenders. The police, public prosecutor and court work closely together. The juvenile proceedings are primarily about an educational effect.
In the view of the Governing Mayor, a quick response from the state is also important because the situation has worsened over the past two years. “The restrictions imposed during the corona pandemic had a massive impact on children and young people and had an even stronger effect in social hotspots,” said Giffey.
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