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German report German report
by Euro Reporter
2009-06-23 10:28:39
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Missionary Activities Prompted Abduction

Officials from the Foreign Ministry in Berlin believe that the Germans kidnapped in Yemen were abducted because of their missionary activities. Local Muslims had threatened one of the group and told him to stop proselytizing -- a warning the German ignored.

The German Christians kidnapped recently in Yemen were probably the victims of an act of revenge, SPIEGEL has learned. According to information obtained from the German Foreign Ministry's crisis task force responsible for the case, a dispute took place in Saada a few months ago related to missionary activities by one of the Germans. The task force has evidence that angry Muslims threatened the German engineer Johannes H. and demanded that he cease his attempts at proselytizing.


Car Conflagrations Ignite Political Row in Berlin

Cars are being torched almost every night amid a sharp rise in left-wing crime in Berlin. Anger is set to peak with a mass protest on the site of Tempelhof airport on Saturday -- making it a burning issue for politicians. All that's needed is a bit of paraffin or some lighter fluid -- and a match. Tuck it under a tire and, after a few minutes, black smoke appears. Soon, the whole car is aflame -- by which time, the culprits have vanished into the night, leaving authorities helpless. In recent months, such scenes have been played out across Berlin almost every night.

The German capital has a lengthy track record for leftist violence. Stone throwing, Molotov cocktails and teargas has become a time-honored annual tradition on May 1, Germany's labor day. Periodic leftist demos have also gotten out of hand in the past.

But in recent weeks, the trend of combustable law breaking -- whether pseudo-political or not -- has reached new heights. Every morning brings news of fresh attacks on luxury cars or other vehicles, long a popular form of political expression among leftist militants in Berlin.


Red Bull Wants Small Soccer Club

The energy drink manufacturer Red Bull is planning to pump millions into an obscure fifth-division soccer team in eastern Germany in a bid to get it into the Bundesliga. But loyal fans have reacted by staging protests and attacking the pitch with herbicides.

When advertising banners are defaced in a fifth-division soccer stadium, when the pitch is destroyed with herbicides and when protests are staged in the small eastern German town of Markranstädt, something out of the ordinary must be going on. That something, in this case, was the takeover of the local football club by a global soft drink company based in Austria.

Red Bull is the reason for all the commotion in Markranstädt, which is situated just outside Leipzig in the state of Saxony. The company is trying to use the local club, SSV Markranstädt, to force its way into the German national league, the Bundesliga, using a clever trick -- and a lot of cash.

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