Home » Employees of AfD top candidate Maximilian Krah arrested – Euractiv DE

Employees of AfD top candidate Maximilian Krah arrested – Euractiv DE

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Employees of AfD top candidate Maximilian Krah arrested – Euractiv DE

After being accused of receiving money through a Russian propaganda network, the right-wing leading candidate Maximilian Krah (AfD) is involved in another scandal. One of his assistants in the EU Parliament was arrested on suspicion of spying for China.

After To report the ARD A Krah employee was arrested on Monday evening (April 22nd). The Federal Prosecutor General assumes that the parliamentary assistant worked for the Chinese secret service to spy on opposition groups in exile in Germany.

He is accused of infiltrating several organizations. In one case in which he served as Secretary General, he is said to have had access to sensitive information.

He is also accused of passing parliamentary information to the Chinese while working as an assistant to Krah in the European Parliament.

In a press statement obtained by Euractiv, Krah said that “spying on behalf of a foreign state is a serious accusation.”

“If the allegations prove to be true, this would result in the immediate termination of employment,” he added.

Krah himself is a member of the EU Parliament’s Committee on International Trade. There he worked as a shadow rapporteur for various opinions on agreements between the EU and China.

In the past, Krah was said to have an unusually close relationship with China for a right-wing politician.

The news platform t-online reported, that Krah maintained close relationships with individuals whose mission it was to expand Chinese influence in Europe. Among other things, it was reported that he is said to have taken sponsored trips to China. In addition, a German-Chinese lobby network is said to have been set up through a close confidant, the focal point of which is Krah’s office in Brussels.

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Last October, the President of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Thomas Haldenwang, emphasized that “[China] It is important to develop a China-friendly mood in parallel, if possible [Bemühungen, politische Informationen zu erlangen]maybe stay a little under the radar.”

Krah’s assistant, who has since been suspended by the European Parliament, is said to have contacted the German authorities ten years ago to work as an informant for them. ARD reported that the offer was rejected because he was suspected of being a double agent.

When Krah was elected to the European Parliament in 2019, he hired the now imprisoned employee because they already knew each other The time. Shortly afterwards, Krah traveled to China and brought with him his new employee, who himself grew up in China. He probably started working for the Chinese authorities at this point, reported The time.

In light of the latest reports, the Greens in the European Parliament are calling on Parliament President Roberta Metsola to take a closer look at the influence of foreign powers on MEPs.

Terry Reintke, the leading candidate of the European Greens, called for “first results [der Untersuchung] before the elections.”

The liberal group Renew Europe echoed the sentiment and called for “swift action to be taken to improve security vetting of staff and ensure the security of Parliament.”

“The allegations of espionage for China are extremely serious,” said Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD/S&D) on Tuesday (April 23) morning in Berlin. “If it is confirmed that the European Parliament was spying for Chinese intelligence services, then it would be an attack from within on European democracy.”

According to press reports, the Chinese Foreign Ministry rejected the espionage allegations. Chinese spokesman Wan Wenbin claimed the allegations were aimed at “slandering and suppressing China.”

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[Bearbeitet von Aurélie Pugnet/Rajnish Singh]

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