After the New Year’s Eve riots, there are a number of suggestions and demands in Berlin as to what to do now. One thing is clear: the House of Representatives will be re-elected in about five weeks and the topic is suitable for the election campaign.
After the New Year’s Eve riots with massive attacks on emergency services, politicians and the police in the capital Berlin promise rapid clarification and consequences. Berlin’s chief of police, Barbara Slowik, reported to the interior committee of the House of Representatives about the first investigation results. After that, 22 cases involving around 10 suspects were handed over to the public prosecutor’s office.
Interior Senator Iris Spranger (SPD) also wants to equip the fire brigade with dashcams. In addition, the new chairwoman of the conference of interior ministers advocates a tightening of gun laws and a ban on firecrackers. In Berlin, she wants to win over the districts for central, organized fireworks.
“Things didn’t go well”
The chief of police rejected criticism of the operational planning in Berlin. The riots were “neither to be expected nor predicted,” said Slowik. Almost 3,000 emergency services, including the federal police, were available. The police officers were regrouped depending on the situation. There were riots across the city. The domestic spokesman for the SPD, Tom Schreiber, disagreed. “Things didn’t go perfectly,” he said. The question is whether the situation had been misjudged in advance.
It became clear, also through descriptions by state fire director Karsten Homrighausen, that attacks on the emergency services did not only occur in hotspots such as Neukölln and Kreuzberg. There were three incidents in Charlottenburg, and emergency services in Lichtenrade were threatened with iron bars. The fire chief spoke out in favor of a ban on firecrackers: it was time to break with the tradition of firecrackers, he said.
Damage totaling 26,000 to 30,000 euros
According to Homrighausen, the fire brigade has so far registered 69 attacks on emergency services. So far, 53 cases have been reported. According to the current status, damage totaling 26,000 to 30,000 euros was registered on 11 vehicles. “I’m assuming the sum will continue to rise,” said the fire chief. According to Slowik, the police reported 47 injuries.
According to Slowik, the police are primarily concentrating on evaluating the extensive video material when clarifying the events. According to the current status, there are 49 procedures for attacks on police officers with 37 suspects and 53 procedures in which firefighters were attacked.
So far, the police have given different information on the number of procedures and suspects. According to a police spokesman, this is related to different periods of time and allegations.
The CDU parliamentary group again received criticism for asking about the first names of suspects with German nationality. Instead of factual enlightenment, the CDU is about election campaigns, the red-green-red government factions explained. Interior Senator Spranger warned against placing a migration background of the offenders in the foreground when dealing with the matter. Left MP Niklas Schrader emphasized that emergency services and victims, especially in Neukölln, also had a history of migration. Berlin’s senior public prosecutor Jörg Raupach emphasized that the procedures would be processed with priority.
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