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Against the systematic attack on press freedom by right-wing …

Against the systematic attack on press freedom by right-wing radicals

After incidents in Saxony and Baden-Württemberg: Conference of Interior Ministers must put freedom of the press on the agenda and take action

The German Journalists' Union in ver.di has called on the members of the Conference of Interior Ministers to deal with the fundamental right to freedom of the press. "Our country needs a plan on how the basic right to freedom of the press and its protection by the state can be effectively enforced by offices, authorities and agencies," demands Cornelia Haß, Federal Director of the German Union of Journalists. The situation is dramatic. "If an employee of the Saxon State Criminal Police Office knows exactly which methods he can apparently use to prevent an insufficiently informed task force from working for 45 minutes, if a police officer in Stuttgart suspends the freedom of the press because he gives priority to the alleged protection of members of the identity movement, then this is an alarm signal for dealing with the freedom of the press. "Politicians cannot stand idly by and watch," said Haß. Especially in right-wing circles, which often tried to evade reporting in the public interest, such methods of obstructing the freedom of the press would be taken up and systematically disseminated.

The incidents in Dresden and Stuttgart were only the tip of the iceberg. The dju in ver.di is aware of a number of cases in which emergency forces have protected neo-Nazis and not the journalists who report on concerts, meetings and demonstrations from the right: "Securing our freedom of the press must be an essential component in the training of security forces.Something bad has brewed up. The interior ministers of all German states have a joint responsibility to ensure that this brew does not go up in the air," explained Haß. There are principles of cooperation between the state and the media which are apparently not sufficiently known in the authorities and which clearly indicate the media's right of way in reporting.