German report reveals far right-wing extremism in police ranks

“Anyone who does not believe in the constitution has no business with the police. Those who watch and keep silent are complicit,” said one state official.

By Josh Plank, World Israel News

Germany’s Interior Minister Horst Seehofer concluded that there is “no structural problem with right-wing extremism” in the country’s security forces despite recent reports of Nazi-related activity among some police officers, Germany’s Die Welt reported Tuesday.

Seehofer’s remarks came after Germany’s domestic intelligence agency published a report Tuesday morning on right-wing extremism in its security forces.

According to the report, federal and state security agencies counted 377 cases of suspected right-wing extremists in their ranks between the beginning of 2017 and this spring.

In addition, there were 1,064 suspected cases in the armed forces.

The cases varied but contained allegations such as racism, anti-Semitism, and the glorification of Nazis.

Seehofer said that although the overall number of cases is low, every proven case is one too many.

Federal Police Chief Dieter Romann explained that the cases made up a small percentage of Germany’s 50,000 federal police officers.

“Given these numbers, I cannot see any right-wing extremist networks in the police,” Romann said.

However, the government report did not include several incidents which have occurred recently.

Last month, 30 police officers in Mulheim were suspended after investigators identified them as participants in chat groups that had shared extreme right-wing and Nazi messages and photos with one another.

North Rhine-Westphalia Interior Minister Herbert Reul described the incident as a “shame for the NRW police,” but said he does not believe there is a “structural problem” with the state police’s 56,000 employees.

“Anyone who does not believe in the constitution has no business with the police. Those who watch and keep silent are complicit,” Reul said.

Reul admitted that extremists within the police force can be hard to detect since the activity was occurring in a hidden digital chat room. “Nobody walks into the office with the Reich battle flag,” he said.

Reul said, “I don’t rule out the possibility that there will be significantly more such chats.”