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'We will not back down,' says senior German lawmaker after attacks

Update : 26 May 2024, 18:40

The vice president of the German Bundestag, Katrin Göring-Eckardt, has condemned the attack on Green Party lawmaker Marie Kollenrott in the central German city of Göttingen.

"We will not back down! We will defend democracy in our country," Göring-Eckardt wrote on the social media platform X, while also wishing her party colleague a speedy recovery "physically and mentally."

Green politician Jürgen Trittin also expressed his solidarity on X, writing: "Violence must have no place."

Kollenrott was punched in the upper body at a campaign stand at an event in Göttingen. Her injuries were described as minor and located on her arms.

Kollenrott serves in the parliament of Lower Saxony in north-western Germany and focuses on environmental and energy policy.

Officers detained the suspected assailant, a man from Göttingen, close to the scene of the incident and investigations are ongoing.

According to initial findings, the man made derogatory remarks about the Greens at an election campaign stand in a pedestrian zone near the old town hall.

Police said there was a brief political discussion with Kollenrott. The man then approached the politician and began punching her.

"Yet another attack on a politician and therefore on our democracy and free elections. We will not be intimidated!" the Green Party political director, Emily Büning, wrote on X.

A series of attacks on politicians and campaign workers in the run-up to June's European elections have shocked Germany.

Franziska Giffey, a prominent Berlin state minister and former mayor, who belongs to Scholz's centre-left Social Democrats (SDP), was attacked while visiting a library in the German capital earlier this month.

Bundestag member Matthias Ecke, also from the SPD, was beaten and hospitalized in Dresden at the start of May. Green Party politician Yvonne Mosler was also insulted, threatened and spat at while putting up posters in Dresden a few days later. 

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