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German court bans counter-intelligence from following ultra-left MP

Berlin, 11.9.2014 1:44, (ROMEA)
German MP Gregor Gysi. (PHOTO:  Armin Kübelbeck)
German MP Gregor Gysi. (PHOTO: Armin Kübelbeck)

German weekly Der Spiegel reports that the German Administrative Court has banned the country's counter-intelligence forces from following ultra-left politician Gregor Gysi. All of the information collected on him to date must be destroyed.

Gysi has long been an MP in the Federal Assembly for the Die Linke (Left) party and its predecessor, the Party of Democratic Socialism (PDS). That was the successor party to the United Socialist Party of Germany, which ruled the German Democratic Republic prior to 1989.  

The Federal Authority for the Protection of the Constitution allegedly considered Gysi a threat to the country's security because of his extreme left-wing opinions and followed his activities. "The Office for the Protection of the Constitution lost by a landslide," Gysi declared on 8 September.  

The MP called for an end to surveillance of his party as a whole. "This kind of control,  monitoring and surveillance of a democratic party is not worthy of the Federal Republic," he said.  

Der Spiegel reports that 42 of Die Linke's 76 MPs in the federal legislature were followed by authorities during 2012. Gysi previously unsuccessfully sued Germany's civilian counter-intelligence force in 2006.  

The Administrative Court has now been guided by a 2013 decision from the German Constitutional Court banning the surveillance of another politican from Die Linke, Bodo Ramelow. He will run next week in elections in Thuringia for the prime ministerial post of that state's government.

In the most recent federal elections in September 2014, Die Linke won 8.6 % of the vote and became the parliament's third-strongest party with 64 MPs. Together with the Green Party, Die Linke is in opposition against the grand coalition led by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

ČTK, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Extremism, Komunismus, Germany, Green Party



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