BERLIN, Sept 7 (Reuters) – Germany’s conservative press
accused the European Central Bank on Friday of writing a “blank
cheque” to indebted euro zone states by agreeing to buy their
bonds, and some pro-government lawmakers threatened legal action
to stop the purchases.
ECB President Mario Draghi unveiled plans on Thursday for
potentially unlimited purchases of bonds of up to three years
maturity of countries that request a European bailout and fulfil
strict policy conditions. The German central bank chief was the
sole dissenting voice in the decision.
BERLIN, July 24 (Reuters) – “Do you, German men and women,
endorse this policy of your Reich government, and are you ready
to express, of your own free will, that you will solemnly commit
yourself to it?”
An undercurrent of menace in the wording of the Nazis’ 1933
referendum to leave the League of Nations – ratified by 95
percent of voters – and the abuse of plebiscites in the Weimar
Republic explain a lingering unease in Germany about national
BERLIN, July 16 (Reuters) – Chancellor Angela Merkel appears
to be reaching the limits of German patience on the euro zone
crisis, with the Constitutional Court and members of her own
coalition seeking deeper scrutiny of whether emergency measures
comply fully with national law.
The Constitutional Court said on Monday it would keep Europe
waiting for nearly two more months before announcing on Sept. 12
whether Germany can legally ratify Europe’s permanent bailout
scheme and the fiscal pact for budget discipline.
BERLIN (Reuters) – Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman promised Germany’s Jewish and Muslim communities on Friday they would be free to carry out circumcision on young boys despite a court ban which has provoked concerns about religious freedom.
In a country that is especially sensitive to allegations of intolerance because of the Nazis’ slaughter of 6 million Jews in the Holocaust, the government said it would find a way around the Cologne court ban in June as a matter of urgency.
BERLIN, July 11 (Reuters) – Germany’s top court, which has
already proved a “nuisance” by delaying Europe’s newest tools
for fighting the debt crisis, is likely to set conditions for
their approval that could go as far as demanding a referendum.
“It is our task to be a nuisance when it comes to European
policy and integration,” is how one judge defined the role of
the Constitutional Court, which on Tuesday defied pressure for a
snap verdict to allow Germany to ratify the crisis measures. The
judge agreed to discuss the role on condition of anonymity.
BERLIN (Reuters) – Jewish religious leaders will hold an international meeting in Berlin on Tuesday to discuss how to respond to a German court ruling against performing circumcision on baby boys, which also sparked protests from Muslims and Christians in Germany.
A court in the western city of Cologne caused an uproar in June by ruling in the case of a Muslim boy who suffered bleeding after such an operation that circumcision causes bodily harm and should only be performed on males old enough to give consent.
BERLIN (Reuters) – In some places Germany’s Federal Constitutional Court is seen as a stone in the shoe of European integration, but at home polls show it is trusted more than any other institution, trumping government, parties and the media.
Though only 2.4 percent of about 6,000 complaints brought before the court each year are upheld, europhiles and eurosceptics alike are looking to the court to draw the lines to defend German sovereignty and self-interest as the euro zone debt crisis demands more concessions from the region’s paymaster and biggest economy.
BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s parliament resoundingly approved the euro zone’s permanent bailout scheme and new budget rules on Friday, but legal hurdles remain and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s concessions to euro zone partners Italy and Spain may make those harder to overcome.
The outcome of the vote was never seriously in doubt after opposition parties agreed to back the budget rules, or “fiscal compact”, in return for growth and job creation measures. Merkel needed their support to get a required two-thirds majority.
BERLIN, June 29 (Reuters) – Germany’s lower house of
parliament resoundingly approved the euro zone’s permanent
bailout scheme and new budget rules on Friday, but legal hurdles
remain and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s concessions to euro zone
partners Italy and Spain may make those harder to overcome.
The outcome of the vote was never seriously in doubt after
opposition parties agreed to back the budget rules, or “fiscal
compact”, in return for growth and job creation measures. Merkel
needed their support to get a required two-thirds majority.
BERLIN, June 29 (Reuters) – Germany’s parliament will
finally approve a permanent euro zone bailout scheme and new
budget rules on Friday drawn up by Angela Merkel, but legal
hurdles remain and her overnight concessions to euro zone
partners Italy and Spain may make them harder to overcome.
A deal with the opposition should give the chancellor,
hurrying back from a tense European Union summit, the required
two-thirds majority in the Bundestag (lower house) and Bundesrat
(upper house) votes beginning at 5 p.m. (1500 GMT).