An ARD report shows how German parliamentarians let Azerbaijan buy them.
Frankfurt am Main – A full-time job in Germany earns an average of 3975 euros. Members of the Bundestag receive a fully taxable parliamentary allowance of € 10,083.47 per month for the exercise of their mandate (since July 1, 2019, according to SPD-MdB Nina Scheer). In addition, there is “a tax-free flat fee of € 4,497.62 a month”, an office fee of up to € 12,000 a year and other discounts such as the Bahncard 100. On Nina Scheer’s website it also says: “Members of parliament are allowed to earn an unlimited amount of money. “
So much for the closeness of the people’s representatives.
Nevertheless, some of them feared that they might at some point gnaw their hunger and looked around for further sources of money. This is the theme of the documentary “The Azerbaijan Connection” on ARD. Lo and behold, they were bubbling up in distant Azerbaijan, a country where gas and oil flow like milk and honey, or as the former MEP Eduard Lintner put it: “in an exceptionally interesting area of the world”.
“The Azerbaijan Connection” (ARD): Parliamentarians are lobbying
Lintner and some of his colleagues – all members of parliament from the CDU and CSU – apparently found it to be “interesting” that they were able to improve their narrow parliamentary wages by promoting Azerbaijan through friendly relations with the state on the Black Sea. To be more precise: You were lobbying. So far, so common. However, the country (member of the Council of Europe) is ruled by a dictator: Ilham Aliyev, not only similar in appearance to his colleague Lukashenko in Belarus, but also in the methods of brutally suppressing criticism. That didn’t bother the gentlemen from the Christian Democratic Union.
The quartet of writers Joachim Auch, Eric Beres, Kai Laufen and Nick Schader have in the report “The Azerbaijan Connection”, for the first time, compiled the clues that add up to a picture of political corruption. Because the individual facts, the individual cases are known. Figures such as the MPs Axel Fischer, Eduard Lintner, Mark Hauptmann (also involved in the mask procurement scandal), Egon Jüttner, Thomas Bareis, Nicholas Löbel or the late Karin Strenz held up their hands in Azerbaijan. Lintner (“these were monthly allowances”) is now banned from the Council of Europe, his colleagues have or had to reckon with legal proceedings.
“The Azerbaijan Connection” (ARD): Election observers bought
Frank Schwabe, human rights commissioner for the SPD, stated that there was a “kind of chummy”. It is absolutely clear that Azerbaijan bought election observers from the ranks of the EU. Because of course Lintner or Strenz apparently didn’t see anything during this activity. They voted together with others against a resolution in the Council of Europe with which the SPD parliamentarian Christoph Strässer wanted to protest against the violations of human rights in Azerbaijan.
To the broadcast
“The Azerbaijan Connection”, Das Erste, Monday, June 28th, 9.45pm. On the net: ARD media library.
But the authors of “The Azerbaijan Connection” (ARD) can cite witnesses such as the exiled journalists Yafaz Hasanov or Emin Huseynov for the massive suppression of the opposition forces in Baku. And the human rights lawyer Zhala Bayramova experienced firsthand the terror of the Aliyev henchmen.
The European Football Championship is currently also being played in Baku. From Uefa, well known for its money-hungry unscrupulousness, nothing is heard there about human rights violations. The association should be in agreement with men of honor like Eduard Lintner. He finds his behavior “neither criminal nor in any way offensive”. (Daland Sailor)