SPD Condemns Controversial Statement by Thomas Bäppler-Wolf regarding New Year’s Eve Riots

On New Year’s Eve, there were disturbances throughout Germany, particularly in the central city of Berlin, where 33 emergency responders were harmed, and 145 individuals were arrested. This has generated talks about a potential ban on fireworks and more forceful action from emergency responders. In addition, the identity of those who participated in the disturbances has become a matter of discussion.

A politician from Frankfurt by the name of Thomas Bäppler-Wolf from the SPD commented about the disturbances that were met with widespread condemnation. In a video posted on Instagram that was later removed, he compared the rioters to apes and criticized refugees. The video was subsequently reposted on social media by politicians from the “PARTEI” party.

We strongly condemn the senseless violence by some youth at NYE. Brutal attacks on the police, fire brigade and emergency services must be consistently investigated and punished. The mayor of Berlin, Franziska Giffey, made that very clear. In addition to criminal prosecution, it is also about better protection and equipment for the emergency services, but also about youth social work and better integration. Franziska Giffey has therefore already invited to a youth summit for this week, where effective answers will be developed.

The statements made by the Frankfurt local politician Bäppler-Wolf about the events are unacceptable and do not correspond to our values. The SPD in Frankfurt has already made that very clear.

SPD / Berlin, January 11, 2023
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