Germany to set up new committee for neo-Nazi probe
by Anadolu Agency
BERLINAug 14, 2015 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Anadolu Agency
Aug 14, 2015 12:00 am
A member of a parliamentary committee investigating the case of the Nationalist Socialist Underground (NSU), a neo-Nazi gang charged with racist killings, said a second committee will be set up to look into the case.
Eva Högl told a German daily that the new committee will try to find answers to questions regarding the gang, adding that she did not believe the NSU acted alone in its crimes and it had a wide network of support inside and outside Germany.
The NSU, believed to be comprised of Zschaepe, Uwe Böhnhardt and Uwe Mundlos, faces charges of killing eight Turkish men, a Greek man and a German policewoman between 2000 and 2007, carrying out bomb attacks and armed robberies. Mundlos and Böhnhardt were found dead in an apparent suicide in a trailer in which they were hiding in 2011. Zschaepe, 40, had turned herself in after setting a house the gang stayed at for some time on fire, allegedly to destroy evidence. Apart from Zschaepe, four people stand trial on charges of aiding and abetting the gang.
The trial was both a revelation and a supposed cover-up for many, as it shed light on how misguided German authorities were in wrongly tracing the killing to a mafia feud while failing to dig deeper into the connections of the NSU with the intelligence services. German intelligence services are blamed for deliberately turning a blind eye to the existence of the gang for more than a decade even though it reportedly had informants all across the neo-Nazi scene in Germany, which flourished in the 1990s.
Meanwhile, lawyers for victims claim the trial failed to shed light on alleged connections of the gang to the intelligence and other neo-Nazi groups and is being dragged down with proceedings hit by occasional snags such as disputes between Zschaepe and lawyers. A new timetable released earlier this month had revealed that the trial will continue until at least September 2016 before the testimony of eyewitnesses wraps up. The court already went to a judiciary recess until September after the latest hearing in the first week of August.
The first committee of inquiry set up in 2012 questioned 107 witnesses and looked into 12,000 files regarding the case and defined the failure of authorities to find the culprits after such a long time a "humiliating failure" for security forces and judiciary. The new committee is expected to start its work in September.