Thuringia: Authorities withdraw their weapons from individual right-wing extremists

Although they have been noticed by the security authorities as right-wing extremists, some of them legally possess edged weapons.

Thuringia: Authorities withdraw their weapons from individual right-wing extremists

Although they have been noticed by the security authorities as right-wing extremists, some of them legally possess edged weapons. Now AfD members have also come under the gaze of the authorities.

Erfurt (dpa/th) - According to the Ministry of the Interior, the weapons authorities in Thuringia have recently withdrawn their sharp weapons from some right-wing extremists. Between 2019 and 2021, the Thuringian Office for the Protection of the Constitution provided the weapons authorities of the municipalities with information on a whole series of right-wing extremists, according to the Interior Ministry's response to a request from left-wing member of the state parliament Katharina König-Preuss. Overall, it was about "a number of people in the lower double-digit range".

In these cases, procedures were initiated to deprive the right-wing extremists of their gun ownership cards and their weapons, a spokesman for the ministry said on request. In a lower single-digit number of cases, these procedures have now been successfully completed. The other procedures were still ongoing. He did not want to provide any further information, citing data protection.

If you want to buy a so-called "sharp pistol" or a "sharp rifle" in Germany, for example, you need a weapon owner's license. In order to get such a card, the person concerned not only has to prove a need, for example as a hunter or sports shooter. There must also be no evidence against him that he does not stand on the ground of the Basic Law.

Anyone who has been noticed by the responsible security authorities as a right-wing extremist does not have the necessary personal qualifications to own a sharp firearm. He may not purchase weapons that require a license or, if he already owns such weapons, must return them.

Thuringia's Minister of the Interior Georg Maier (SPD) recently announced that he intends to disarm members of the state AfD who, for example, as marksmen or hunters, have firearms that require a permit. The Thuringian state association of the AfD is led by the state's Office for the Protection of the Constitution as a proven right-wing extremist object of observation. According to the spokesman for the Ministry of the Interior, proceedings have now been initiated against members of the AfD parliamentary group who have weapons that require a permit. They should lead to the fact that they have to give them back.

The Interior Ministry's response to König-Preuss' request also makes it clear that right-wing extremists in Thuringia have repeatedly used weapons that do not require a license to commit crimes. This includes many knives, blank guns or airguns and batons.

In March 2020 in Eisenach, for example, a right-wing extremist injured another person with a knife by cutting his chest, neck and head. Before that, he had insulted the injured party in a hostile manner to foreigners. In December 2020, a right-wing extremist reportedly shot out of a window with an airgun in Zella-Mehlis and shouted unconstitutional slogans.

In other cases, there is a suspicion that right-wing extremists have built dangerous weapons themselves in order to use them against political opponents. According to the information, a broken Molotov cocktail was found in Veßra monastery in October 2019, with which the food truck of a supporter of the local alliance for democracy had allegedly been attacked.

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