05:08 GMT +322 November 2019
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    A balloon of the right-wing populist party Alternative for Germany (AfD) party can be seen during an election party in Berlin on March 13, 2016.

    Right-Wing AfD Member Told to Quit as Bundestag Panel Chair Over Allusion to Judas Betrayal of Jesus

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    Last month, Stephan Brandner had to apologise in the German parliament after he retweeted a “racist post” in the wake of an extremist shooting attack on Halle's synagogue that claimed the lives of two people.

    Stephan Brandner, a member of Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, faces call to resign as chairman of the parliament’s legal committee after he was accused of using irrelevant allusions in a tweet related to German rock star Udo Lindenberg.

    Jan-Marco Luczak, deputy legal affairs spokesman for Chancellor Angela Merkel's CDU/CSU parliamentary bloc, claimed that in the tweet, Brandner had "toyed quite deliberately with anti-Semitic terminology."

    Luczak was echoed by Volker Ullrich, interior affairs spokesman for Bavaria's Christian Social Union (CSU), who told the German newspaper Handelsblatt that Brandner's attitude was "patently undignified” and “outrageous” .

    The spokesman insisted that Brandner should resign as chairman of the federal parliament's legal affairs committee which is tasked with overseeing democracy, civil law principles and values stipulated in Germany's constitution.

    Social Democrat (SPD) legal affairs spokesman Johannes Fechner said that his party would like Brandner to step down via the Bundestag's Standing Orders Committee despite the fact that procedures for such a move have yet to be clarified.

    The proposal was also supported by the opposition Green party parliamentary manager Britta Hasselmann, who tweeted that Brandner is “unworthy as legal affairs committee chairman and unacceptable in this role.”

    Marco Buschmann, of the opposition Free Democratic Party (FDP) blamed Brandner for “gambling” with anti-Semitic prejudices, adding,” that is simply disgusting and not worthy of a committee chairman of the German Bundestag”.

    Bundestag Legal Committee Head Hits Out at Rock Star Lindenberg

    The MPs’ criticism comes after Brandner tweeted on Thursday that awarding Lindenberg with Germany's prestigious Federal Order of Merit (Bundesverdienstkreuz) is tantamount to a "Judaslohn" for the rock star's outspoken stand "against us [the AfD]."

    Germans use the word "Judaslohn" to refer to a traitor's reward like one paid to Judas for his betrayal of Jesus of Nazareth.

    In October, Brandner extended apologies to MPs after drawing cross-party condemnation for retweeting what was widely perceived as a racist post following an extremist gun attack on a synagogue in the eastern city of Halle which killed two people.

    The non-governmental research and information centre anti-Semitism Berlin (Rias) registered 1,083 anti-Semitic incidents in Berlin last year, which is 14 percent more than the previous year.

    At the same time, Rias project manager Benjamin Steinitz noted that anti-Semitism is taking “threatening forms” and becoming blatant. The number of anti-Semitic attacks increased from 18 to 46 and the number of threats increased from 26 to 46.

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    Tags:
    tweet, resignation, lawmaker, Alternative for Germany (AfD), Germany
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