Germany: Parliament rejects AfD proposal over freed journalist Yucel

The German parliament rejected on Thursday a proposal made by the AfD to distance itself from comments made by freed journalist Deniz Yucel. After a heated debate, the proposal was roundly rejected with 522 members voting against the AfD. Members of the AfD claimed efforts by Germany’s diplomatic bodies to secure the Yucel’s release were disproportionate. They also called on the members... Еще of the Bundestag to denounce previous 'anti-German' comments made by the journalist, including an article written in 2011, where he says, «The quick demise of the Germans is but the most beautiful aspect of peoples extinction.» The calls made by the AfD were shouted down by members of the other Bundestag fractions. Left Party member Jan Korte stated, «Your criticism of Deniz Yucel is exactly the same as that of the Turkish President Erdogan. You are the extended arm of Erdogan in the battle against Deniz Yucel and press freedom.» Meanwhile, Green party member Cem Ozdemir lamented that the AfD were sitting in the Bundestag and able to make such a proposal. «The truth is that this country has dramatically changed in the one year that Deniz Yucel was in prison. And that can be witnessed in this debate. Now there are members sitting in this house who I am not permitted to label racists, while they would behave like racists,» the Green leader said. The German-Turkish journalist was imprisoned in Turkey for over a year without conviction, before being released earlier on Friday, February 16. Yucel, who worked for the German newspaper Die Welt, was arrested on February 14 last year on allegations of spreading terrorist propaganda.

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