In Leipzig, left-wing radicals rioted again on Sunday night. The police took action and surrounded around 1,000 people for hours. That causes criticism.
Dozens injured, burning barricades and cars, around 30 arrests: in Leipzig there have been renewed clashes between left-wing radicals and the police. The reason was still the verdict against left-wing extremist Lina E. on Wednesday.
Stones, bottles and an incendiary device were thrown at police officers again on Saturday evening from an initially peaceful demonstration with well over 1,500 people. The forces encircled around 1000 demonstrators. Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) announced that she would keep an eye on the left-wing extremist scene. But in addition to approval of the police action, there was also strong criticism – not only in social networks.
“The senseless violence of left-wing extremist chaos and rioters cannot be justified by anything,” said Faeser on Sunday. “Anyone who throws stones, bottles and incendiary devices at police officers must be held accountable.” The federal and state security authorities would continue to keep a close eye on the violent left-wing extremist scene in the coming days and weeks and would intervene consistently if criminal and violent crimes occurred.
Injured police officers, injured protesters
According to the police, around 50 police officers were injured in the “massive riots”. In addition, there were also injuries on the part of the demonstrators, said police chief René Demmler – he could not quantify the exact number. The police are investigating about serious breaches of the peace and attacks on police officers.
In addition to the arrests, between 40 and 50 people were taken into custody and released by Sunday noon. In addition, those trapped sometimes had to wait for hours for the police to register their identities. “Shortly after 5 a.m., the processing crews found the last identity,” it said.
praise for the police
City administration and police defended the procedure. Unfortunately, violent criminals mingled with the peacefully announced demonstration and exploited it, said Mayor Burkhard Jung (SPD). It was therefore right to ban two other demonstrations beforehand. Police chief Demmler spoke of “a lot of senseless, extreme violence”. It was necessary to de-escalate through strength. Saxony’s Minister of the Interior, Armin Schuster (CDU), praised the “successful handling of operations in a particularly challenging situation” on Twitter. He wished the injured police officer a speedy recovery. “Saxony is proud of you!”
The federal chairman of the German police union, Rainer Wendt, warned: “As correct as the fight against right-wing extremism is, left-wing extremism must no longer be regarded as a side issue.” The operational concept in Leipzig prevented worse things from happening. “The rule of law has prevailed despite thousands of acts of violence.” The complaints from left-wing circles are cynical and unbelievable.
criticism of the use
But there was clear criticism of the actions of the police. The parliamentary secretary of the left in the Saxon state parliament, Marco Böhme, criticized that she had allowed the situation to escalate by the “actual ban” on a solidarity demonstration for the convicted Lina E.. The SPD domestic politician Albrecht Pallas spoke of a “provocative approach” by the police. She acted with unnecessary severity when pushing bystanders away and surrounded many people for hours. “The massive police presence or the resulting massive police reaction to trifles had an escalating effect, which mostly affected bystanders.”
The left-wing faction now wants to make the operation an issue in the state parliament’s interior committee. To this end, her parliamentary group will request a special session on Monday, said MP Kerstin Köditz via Twitter. “The background to the violations of fundamental rights, especially the boiler, is in need of clarification.”
The reason for the riots was the verdict against the left-wing extremist Lina E. and three co-defendants for attacks on alleged or actual neo-Nazis, in which several people were injured, some seriously. The 28-year-old was sentenced to five years and three months in prison by the Dresden Higher Regional Court on Wednesday, but was initially released.
The city had banned a “Day X” solidarity demonstration planned for Saturday, which had been mobilized nationwide. Already on Saturday night there had been clashes between left-wing radicals and the police in the city. The police were in the city at the weekend with a large contingent including water cannons and helicopters.
The operation continued on Sunday, the police were prepared for further disturbances. However, a demonstration that had been called to the south of Leipzig was banned by the city. “The reason for this is the experience of Saturday evening,” said a spokesman on request.
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