Federal prosecutor to investigate German politician’s killing

first_imgGermany’s federal prosecutor will investigate the killing of a regional politician, saying authorities suspected a far-right extremist motive in the case.Walter Lübcke, a regional council president in the German state of Hesse and a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU), was found shot in the head on the terrace of his home earlier this month.On Saturday, a 45-year-old man identified as Stephan E. was arrested based on a DNA match. German media reported on Sunday that the suspect had ties to the far right. On Monday, the federal prosecutor’s office — whose responsibilities include investigations into terror and extremism — announced it would take over the investigation.The office said there were “adequate grounds” to suspect “a right-wing extremist background” in the case, referring to the suspect’s “past life and his publicly made political views.”German media reported that Stephan E. had been linked to the neo-Nazi National Democratic Party (NPD) in Hesse. According to Die Zeit, he was convicted of attacking an accommodation center for refugees with a pipe bomb in 1993.Lübcke — whose funeral was attended by 1,300 people on Thursday — was an outspoken advocate for refugees.At the height of the migrant crisis in 2015, he argued that helping people in need was a fundamental Christian value and said that “whoever does not share these values can leave this country at any time.” He subsequently received death threats from the far right.The newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and public broadcasters NDR and WDR also reported that when searching the suspect’s mobile phone, investigators had discovered inflammatory social media comments. According to Süddeutsche Zeitung, Stephan E. wrote on YouTube in 2018: “Either this government resigns soon or there will be deaths.” The newspaper reported that weapons had been found in the suspect’s apartment, but that the murder weapon was not among them. Also On POLITICO Suspect in German politician’s murder linked to extreme right: reports By Emma Anderson Germany passes controversial migration law By Judith Mischkelast_img read more

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