Saxony-Anhalt: Interior Minister Stahlknecht fired | Free press


Magdeburg (AP) – The Prime Minister of Saxony-Anhalt, Reiner Haseloff, has fired Interior Minister Holger Stahlknecht (both CDU). For example, on Friday he drew the conclusion from a disturbing interview with Stahlknecht about the coalition dispute over the radio license, as the state chancellery announced.

In the interview, the Home Secretary had announced a CDU minority government in case the coalition broke with the SPD and Greens in the dispute over the increase in the amount of radio license.

The main reason for Haseloff’s decision was that Stahlknecht had publicly uncoordinated the coalition breach and the possibility of a CDU minority government in the ongoing efforts to stabilize the coalition, the Magdeburg State Chancellery announced. The relationship of trust with Stahlknecht was so seriously disrupted that he could no longer belong to the state government.

Haseloff has already handed over the dismissal certificate to Stahlknecht. The head of government continues to pursue the goal of leading a government that can act in all respects and has a reliable majority in the corona pandemic, he said.

The 56-year-old Stahlknecht had in an interview with the “Magdeburger Volksstimme” not only ruled out that his party would refrain from increasing the contributions, but also criticized the image of East Germany in the public broadcasters and reporting with the “Raised index finger. of moralization “justified.

At the same time, he had announced that in the event of the collapse of the Magdeburg coalition, he would continue with a CDU minority government until regular state elections in June 2021. Prime Minister Haseloff has always categorically ruled out a minority government – as well as a vote-dependency on the AfD. After the interview, coalition partners SPD and Greens accused Stahlknecht of wanting to use the broadcast dispute to overthrow Haseloff and still become prime minister himself.

The interview also created a tense atmosphere in the CDU state, there are outbursts of anger. The Christian Democrats have been trying for weeks to ensure that their starting position on the public broadcaster differs significantly from that of the AfD. The public broadcasters are correct and important, media politician Markus Kurz repeated time and again. However, the stations are too big and too expensive, he explained, why his group is voting against the rate increase from 86 cents to 18.36 euros on January 1, 2021 and therefore wants to block it nationwide.

The AfD also rejects the state treaty including the premium and has a majority in the state parliament with the Christian Democrats. In principle, the AfD opposition is against the premium system.

The uncoordinated interview is part of a whole series of incidents that Stahlknecht has criticized in recent years. Just a few weeks ago, the chairman of the Central Council of Jews, Josef Schuster, proposed that he resign and accused him of promoting anti-Semitism with statements about police protection for Jewish institutions.

Other examples included the reluctant expulsion of a CDU district administrator in Anhalt-Bitterfeld, who had a popular neo-Nazi motif tattooed on his arm; or the hasty and ultimately unsuccessful appointment of the controversial police unionist Rainer Wendt as Secretary of the Interior.

Stahlknecht has been Minister of the Interior since 2011, the CDU’s chief of land since 2018 and has been regarded for years as the successor of Prime Minister Haseloff (CDU). Just a few weeks ago, the incumbent party thwarted this ambition and announced that it would run for a third term as the best CDU candidate.