German Minister Seeks to Cut Funding for Radical Far-right Party

Parliament's upper house, which sought the ban amid concerns for rising resentment about an influx of migrants, launched the initiative.

File photo: Supporters of the National Democratic Party demonstrate in Germany. January 9, 2016.
WOLFGANG RATTAY/REUTERS

Germany's justice minister says he wants to examine ways of cutting off state financing for a far-right party in the coming months.

In January, Germany's highest court ruled that the National Democratic Party, or NPD, is too politically insignificant to justify a ban but said its goals run counter to the German constitution. The court's president, Andreas Vosskuhle, said that the party was anti-constitutional in nature.

"The NPD pursues anti-constitutional goals but at the moment there is an insufficient weight of evidence to make it appear possible that their behavior will result in success," said Vosskuhle.

Parliament's upper house, which sought the ban amid concerns for rising resentment about an influx of migrants, last week launched an initiative to cut off anti-constitutional parties from state funding.

Justice Minister Heiko Maas was quoted Monday as telling the Funke newspaper group that "we should examine very carefully the possibilities" of withdrawing funding. He said that's feasible in this parliamentary term, which ends with an election in September.

Maas said that "tax money for the NPD is a direct state investment in radical right-wing agitation."