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Sunday, February 5, 2023

CSU retreat: Union railed against “traffic light fuss” in Seeon

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For two Corona years, the CSU members of the Bundestag had to do without their exam in Seeon Monastery at the beginning of the year. Now they meet again – and get in the mood for an election campaign.

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The CSU in Bavaria and the CDU in Hesse are entering the 2023 election year with a declaration of war on the traffic light coalition. “It will be a year of decisions about the traffic light chaos,” said CSU regional group leader Alexander Dobrindt in the Bavarian Seeon monastery.

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Hesse’s Prime Minister Boris Rhein (CDU) emphasized that the “traffic light hustle and bustle” in Berlin was not good for the state. “In particular, it also damages our country’s economic power. And in this respect, a strong corrective from the countries is needed.”

In Seeon Monastery, the 45 CSU members of the Bundestag met for the first time since the beginning of the corona pandemic for the traditional retreat at the beginning of the year. The Prime Minister of Hesse was invited as a guest. In both federal states, new state parliaments will be elected in autumn – in Bavaria on October 8th, in Hesse the exact date of the election has not yet been set. Bavaria’s Prime Minister and CSU boss Markus Söder was there for a few hours at the start of the meeting.

“We are the better option for Germany,” said Dobrindt, with a view to the course of the SPD, Greens and FDP in the federal government. “It will not get better, it will rather get worse,” predicted Rhein. The Union not only criticizes, it also has “very constructive, very modern and very innovative approaches”.

The Russian war of aggression in the Ukraine and the consequences for Germany were central themes in the closed conference, which was generally low in tension and free of surprises. An overview:

war in Ukraine

Dobrindt and Rhein called on the federal government, after the decision in favor of Marder armored personnel carriers, to quickly bring about the delivery of Leopard-type battle tanks to the Ukraine. “The Federal Chancellor is asked to make this decision now,” said Dobrindt on Sunday. Rhein emphasized: “In the Ukraine, peace and freedom are also being defended throughout Europe.”

The President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, welcomed the planned delivery of German infantry fighting vehicles. “It is important that we continue to support the Ukrainian people – politically, humanitarianly, financially and militarily,” she said.

Internal and external security

In the face of ever new threats from inside and outside, the CSU is pushing for the establishment of a national security council and a top national security adviser. Such a decision by the federal government is “more urgent than ever,” said Dobrindt. However, he was only renewing a demand that has been discussed again and again for years and that the Union had already raised in the 2021 federal election campaign. There are many different threats from abroad and at home. That’s why a national security council is needed that bundles all these issues and advises the federal government.

The security expert Peter Neumann supported this demand. Germany is the only country in the G7 group without such a Security Council that believes it can afford different ministries to pursue different policies. “That’s why a national security council is needed, which coordinates.”

Germany’s role in Europe

The head of the CSU state group once again called on Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) to show leadership. “A weak federal government is an Achilles’ heel for Europe.” The current leadership weakness is the reason “why Europe as a whole cannot be strong”. Dobrindt complained: While French President Emmanuel Macron is leading the way in arms deliveries to Ukraine, for example, the chancellor is hesitating.

However, EU Parliament President Metsola made it clear that she does see Germany as a country that is showing leadership in Europe. She sees a country “that leads, that takes responsibility, that shares responsibility”.

power supply

The CSU reiterated its demand not to finally shut down the last three nuclear power plants in Germany in mid-April, as decided by the traffic lights. In view of the strained energy supply, they should continue for several years. Dobrindt said Germany is lucky that the weather is so mild right now and there is more wind than usual in winter. If this were not the case, “then the risk of a blackout would be quite clear.” The situation in the gas and electricity sectors remains tense. “There is no air in the system.”

However, the head of the network operator 50Hertz, Stefan Kapferer, pointed out that the power supply in Germany was “in the usual reliable way” this winter.

Source: Stern

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