Germany halts neo-Nazi subsidies

AFP-JIJI

Germany’s lower house of Parliament, the Bundestag, said Saturday it had halted public subsidies to the neo-Nazi party NPD over an unpaid fine.

“The payments were stopped,” a parliamentary spokesman was quoted as saying by the online version of Der Spiegel newsmagazine, meaning the far-right party will not receive the €113,000 ($149,000) sum for the year 2012.

The party did not pay a €1.27 million ($1.68 million) fine to the Parliament for mistakes in its accounts, the spokesman said.

All parties in Germany receive 85 euro cents for every vote they get in European, legislative and regional elections, which drops to 70 cents once they have 4 million votes or more.

On Dec. 14, Germany’s upper house, the Bundesrat, started proceedings to have the NPD banned from political life over alleged links to a group accused of racist murders. The NPD has a mixed base of young rightwing members and Third Reich nostalgists. Though it has no members in the national Parliament, it has a significant presence in poorer areas of eastern Germany.