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August 15, 2020

 

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Germany reorganizes special military unit because some of its personnel are members of the ultra-right

11.7.2020 10:11
German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (2020). (PHOTO:  Facebook)
German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (2020). (PHOTO: Facebook)

Germany is addressing an unprecedented scandal: According to officials, some members of the elite miltary unit called the Kommando Spezialkräfte (KS) are members of the extreme right. Part of the unit has been ordered dissolved because of the discovery.

The KS is an elite unit of the Bundeswehr that was created in 1990 as the equivalent of Special Forces in the USA. According to Agence France-Presse, the KS has about 1 400 members whose job description is to combat hostage-taking and terrorism.

German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, in an interview for Sueddeutsche Zeitung, announced that she has issued an order to abolish part of the group that was initially autonomous within the unit and then became de facto independent of any central leadership. The reduction involves the partial (not total) abolition of the KS, and about 70 soldiers should be released from duty as a result.

It had previously been known that many people famous for their inclinations toward ultra-right ideologies could be found among the KS members. In May, for example, ammunition, arms and explosives were found hidden in the home of one member of the unit.

The members of the KS have long been under investigation by the German military counter-intelligence service. Karrenbauer confirmed that house searches of the KS members had been perforemd as part of the investigation.

The working group on the issue has also produced a report on the matter. They recommend the KS undergo extensive personnel changes and systemic transformation if it is to continue cooperating with the Bundeswehr.

fk, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Armáda, Extremism, Germany, ultra-right



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