Germany to crack down on Covid protesters in yellow star badges

Police in Berlin have been authorised to crack down on protesters wearing badges resembling the yellow “Judenstern” (Jews’ star) and other symbols associated with the Nazi era at demonstrations against vaccine mandates or other pandemic restrictions.

According to an internal update by the Berlin police antisemitism commissioner, first reported by the newspaper BZ Berlin, “the use of adapted ‘Jewish stars’ at gatherings can now be assumed to be a fundamental disturbance of public peace”.

Police in the German capital have been instructed to document, remove and confiscate the yellow star badges, which some German vaccine sceptics have taken to wearing with the superimposed words “ungeimpft” (“unvaccinated”) in order to draw a parallel between modern governments’ treatment of those who decline to take a jab against Covid-19 and the systematic stigmatisation of Jewish citizens in the Nazi era.

The police’s internal memo clarifies that wearing the blue and white Star of David, classified as a purely religious symbol, remains legal at demonstrations.

게다가, police are also instructed to take action against other analogies that trivialise the 홀로코스트, which are to be classified as forms of “secondary antisemitism”.

The guidelines follow a ruling by a Berlin district court that came into effect last October, when a 56-year-old man was sentenced to “incitement to hatred” over a Facebook post that showed the yellow star imprinted with the words “ungeimpft”.

In a possible sign that Berlin is already acting on the guidelines, a woman wearing a placard with the words “stop this genocide” was filmed being detained by police at a rally against Covid-19 vaccine mandates outside the Bundestag on Wednesday afternoon.

Berlin police said its officers had briefly detained a woman and taken her details on suspicion of incitement to hatred, the concept in German criminal law that also relates to Holocaust denial.

The woman’s placard also referenced Vera Sharav, a US-based Holocaust survivor who has campaigned against some practices of the biomedical industry, including vaccines for children.

Inside the German parliament, delegates were for the first time on Wednesday debating a universal vaccine mandate, which some politicians argue will be a necessary tool to stop further resurgences of the virus. 약 73% of Germany’s population is considered fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

While the government has positioned itself in favour of a mandate, some parliamentarians from the three governing parties are opposed, while others, including Germany’s justice minister, Marco Buschmann, argued in favour of following Italy’s path in requiring only those aged over 50 to take the jab.

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